State pump price jumps 28 cents over the past month - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

State pump price jumps 28 cents over the past month

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South Dakota's statewide gasoline price average today is $3.458 per gallon for regular self-serve, 28 cents above where it stood one month ago, according to www.FuelGaugeReport.AAA.com, but 18 cents below the price on March 4, 2013. The state's average has not been this high since five months ago on Oct. 4, 2013.

The average price at the pump nationwide today is $3.46 per gallon, three cents more expensive than one week ago and 18 cents more than one month ago, however it's 29 cents below the price on the same date last year. 

The national average has increased for 25 straight days – the longest streak since a 36-day stretch of steadily rising prices over January and February of last year. On Feb. 21 this year, the national average was 39 cents less than on Feb. 21, 2013. That year-over-year gap has narrowed by a dime over the last 11 days.  

Gas prices are predicted to continue to rise in the coming weeks due to seasonal refinery maintenance and possible geopolitical threats to global oil supplies. However the national price at the pump is unlikely to surpass last year's high of $3.79 recorded on February 27, the earliest pre-summer peak price on record. 

"AAA expects South Dakota's as well as the national price averages to increase 10 to 25 cents more this spring before falling after Memorial Day, barring any unexpected market- moving events," said Marilyn Buskohl, spokeswoman for AAA South Dakota. "What's happening now in the Ukraine could constitute such an event should global oil supplies be impacted." 

At 10.4 million barrels per day, Russia is the third largest oil-producing country after Saudi Arabia (11.7 million barrels per day) and the United States (11.1 million barrels per day), according to the most recent Energy Information Administration data. Rapidly escalating tensions in the Ukraine, including reports that Russia has sent troops into the Crimean peninsula, have been the major story for the oil markets this week. At the close of yesterday's formal trading on the NYMEX, West Texas Intermediate crude settled up $2.33 at $104.92 per barrel, the highest settlement price since mid-September of last year. Although there have been no disruptions to global supplies yet, any further escalation of hostilities could propel global oil prices higher, which has the potential to magnify the seasonal price increases at the pump. 

Gas prices ended February with the largest increase since July with the South Dakota average rising a bit more than 28 cents and the national average up about 17 cents per gallon over the course of the month.

 

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