Gasoline prices trickled downward again last week but that may be about to change, AAA warned Monday.
The attacks over the weekend on Saudi Arabia’s two biggest oil refineries have shaken the world’s pricing of gasoline futures, sending them upward about 11 percent on Sunday. President Donald Trump responded by opening access to America’s emergency reserves, but the net result still may send gas prices upward, AAA forecast.
Crude oil and gasoline futures prices opened with a bang Sunday night, AAA declared in a news release Monday morning. The United Sates benchmark — West Texas Intermediate — jumped 11 percent or a total of more than $6 for a barrel of oil. Gasoline futures also rose 11 percent or about 17 cents per gallon.
“This is a fluid situation which has quickly ignited, but could also flame out — depending on how the market responds over the next couple of days,” Mark Jenkins, spokesman, AAA — The Auto Club Group, stated in the release. “If oil prices hold at current levels, drivers could see gas prices begin to rise anywhere from five to 20 cents by the end of the week.”
Overall, Florida drivers currently are paying an average price of $2.40 per gallon, AAA reported. That’s down about three cents from last week, and about 34 cents from this time last year.
The cheapest gas in Florida was found in the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater market, at an average price of $2.33 a gallon. Gas cost an average of $2.36 a gallon in Pensacola and Orlando.
The most expensive gas was found in the Panama City market, averaging $2.53 per gallon. The West Palm Beach-Boca Raton market averaged $2.51, and Tallahassee, $2.48.
Miami drivers are paying just under $2.48 a gallon; Fort Lauderdale drivers, $2.41; Jacksonville, $2.35; Gainesville, $2.44; and Naples, $2.42.