The continuing spike in gasoline prices is tied to seasonal changes at the refineries, where producers are shifting from winter gasoline, which is cheaper to refine, to summer gasoline.
“Normal, seasonal factors are at play,” said Patrick DeHaan, spokesman for GasBuddy.com, a consumer website. Winter gasoline has been offered at discounts, but refineries, which retool in February and March to produce the most expensive summer gas, are completing that transition.
Prepare to pay a little extra.
In addition, the price of crude oil has rebounded of late, DeHaan said, which is also causing a spike in pump prices.
West Texas Intermediate prices were over $53 Monday; three weeks ago, oil was selling for $48.04 a barrel, as the global market was flooded with the product.
In metro New Orleans, six stations had gas prices listed below $2 per gallon on Gasbuddy.com, including Costco, Sam's Club and four others.
“It won’t last long,” DeHaan said. Expect prices to keep increasing.
The average price of a gallon of unleaded gasoline was $2.18 in Louisiana on Monday, up 7 cents from a week ago.
Gasoline prices appeared to spike as news broke about a missile strike against Syria in the Middle East. But DeHaan said the had "zero percent" to do with the continuing upward climb in prices.
"Ask about that in a couple of weeks," he said.
Nationally, gasoline was selling at $2.39 a gallon Monday, up more than 6 cents from last week.
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