Gas prices rising for first time since July


Published: Monday, January 5, 2009 at 7:17 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, January 5, 2009 at 7:17 a.m.

Gas prices have been rising by a penny or two nationwide every day so far this year, the first increases since July 6. Analysts have cited two situations on the other side of the world for the increases.

Facts

Average regular unleaded gas prices in Florida

Current $1.678
Week Ago $1.665
Month Ago $1.828
Year Ago $3.147

Source: AAA Auto Club South

According to Gregg Laskoski, managing director of public relations for AAA Auto Club South, the war in Gaza and OPEC's plans to cut production have been pushing prices higher. The national average price for gas has risen four cents a gallon since New Year's Day.

There is concern among oil traders that the Israeli-Hamas war in Gaza could interrupt Middle Eastern oil exports. Also, investors are waiting to hear what OPEC ministers decide when they meet on Jan. 19. A few weeks ago OPEC announced a planned production cut of four million barrels a day and a further production cut is expected to be announced at the end of the OPEC meeting in Kuwait City.

"We are reminded this week that volatility in any part of the world can be worrisome, but when it involves the Middle East, the hypersensitivity of the oil industry increases exponentially," said Laskoski.

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