The rise in gasoline prices is a nationwide issue. How much someone pays for gas is affected by their state income and the local economy. Prices have gone up across all regions, with the largest increase coming from the west coast. Based on data gathered by the AAA fuel gauge report, nationally gas price averages are now at $3.76 per gallon.
CNN Money reports that the average price for regular gasoline is more than $4 a gallon in California, Alaska and Hawaii. At $4.38 a gallon, Hawaii ranks as the nation's highest. Other states fall a few cents short of the $4 mark in Connecticut, Oregon, and New York. And Wyoming has the nation's lowest gas prices, averaging $3.23 a gallon.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) data shows that the California price has increased more than 45 cents per gallon over the last two weeks. The Rocky Mountain price increased almost 10 cents to reach $3.20 per gallon, but remains the lowest regional average price in the Nation. Moving eastward, the Gulf Coast average price is $3.56 per gallon, and in the Midwest regular gasoline averages $3.62 per gallon. The East Coast price is the closest it has been all year to the national average, at $3.74 per gallon.
The New York Daily News spoke to Assemblyman David Weprin (D-Queens) who announced that there should be some type of legislation that would force gas stations to post signs with contact information for the New York State Consumer Protection Board, which investigates allegations of price increases by retailers. “Prices have fluctuated so quickly that a customer cannot tell what the fair price for gas is supposed to be,” Weprin said. If legislation did pass, this would help prevent anyone from increasing the already high gas prices and taking advantage of the people.
EIA reports show that inventories in the United States are down 1 million barrels last week to end at 43.9 million barrels, but remained higher than the year-ago level and the 5-year range. Currently the average cost for oil is $100 a barrel, but according to the Los Angeles Times, the Energy Department is expecting oil to average $103.75 a barrel in 2013, with gasoline averaging $3.59 a gallon.
According to the Associated Press, today is Obama’s first full news conference of the year and he plans to discuss housing, gas prices, and foreign tests on tap. Hopefully there is a way to decrease the price or refrain from changing it for a while.
Top Ten States
Price of Regular Gas*
5. New York
10. New Jersey
*Prices are based on state average price.
Read more at the LA Times.