Local gas prices keep rising, but fast-and-furious pace slows

Published: Mar. 14, 2022 at 10:34 AM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Ga. - The average U.S. price of regular-grade gasoline shot up 83 cents over the past month to $4.32 per gallon, 83.6 cents higher than a month ago and $1.47 higher than a year ago.

And it’s high here in the two-state region, averaging $4.29 Monday in Georgia, up from $3.97 a week ago and $3.34 a month ago, according to AAA. The average price Monday in Augusta is $4.21, up 30 cents from a week ago and 91 cents from a month ago.

Gas is averaging $4.07 Monday in South Carolina, up 19 cents from a week ago and 8 cents from a month ago, according to AAA. Gas is averaging $4.13 per gallon Monday in Aiken and Edgefield counties.

Industry analyst Trilby Lundberg of the Lundberg Survey said the new average still quite a ways from the inflation-adjusted record high of about $5.24 per gallon.

Lundberg said gas prices are likely to remain high in the short term as crude oil costs soar amid global supply concerns following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

But one analyst point out that at least the rate of increase appears to be slowing down.

“After a furious increase in the national average over the last two weeks, the top appears to be in,” said Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysts at GasBuddy. He called the development “a well-needed break from the large surge in gas prices we’ve experienced over the last few weeks.”

According to AAA, the price of crude oil has gradually fallen below $110 per barrel.

AAA spokesperson Andrew Gross explained the cost of oil accounts for 50% of what drivers pay at the pump.

“This war is roiling an already tight global oil market and making it hard to determine if we are near a peak for pump prices, or if they keep grinding higher. It all depends on the direction of oil prices,” Gross said.

Energy prices are also contributing to the worst inflation that Americans have seen in 40 years, far outpacing higher wages.

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