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Gas prices went down by 3 cents per gallon in Florida in the past week. Photo via AP/Tim Aylen

Corona Economics

Florida gas prices down another 3 cents

Hurricane Delta’s impact on the Gulf Coast could change the trend.

After a brief uptick in prices to start the month, average gas prices in Florida fell in the past week, according to AAA Florida Auto Club data released Monday.

The average price for a gallon of gas dropped about 3 cents in the past week. Floridians are paying about $2.16 per gallon at the pump.

The slight decrease is more in line with trends for most of the summer and into the fall. The first week of October did see a jump of about 10 cents, but that was a break from the usual pattern of dropping prices most of this year.

The latest decrease came as the oil-rich, refinery-laden areas of Louisiana and Texas were slammed by another hurricane along the Gulf Coast. Hurricane Delta plowed into that area late last week.

“It’s still a little early to know what, if any impacts Hurricane Delta will have on gas prices in Florida,” said Mark Jenkins, AAA Florida spokesperson. “For now, wholesale gasoline prices are at a level that could allow pump prices to drop another 5 cents in the short term. However, prices in the coming weeks will likely be swayed by news coming out of the Gulf Coast, as crews assess any storm damage to refineries and pipelines.”

Many of those Gulf Coast refineries were already shut down due to Hurricane Laura that slammed the region in late August.

Florida gasoline prices are 27 cents less per gallon than a year ago. The coronavirus outbreak has kept gasoline prices depressed since March when the outbreak began and sent prices plunging. There was a slight rebound in May and into June when it appeared COVID-19 was on the wane. But when the pandemic resurged in summer months and few motorists were traveling during vacation season, prices went downward again.

The most expensive gallon of gas in the state in the past week could be found in West Palm Beach where it averaged $2.28 per gallon followed by Ocala at $2.20 and Naples at $2.19.

The lowest average price for a gallon of gas in the past week was being sold in Tallahassee at $2.09 followed by Punta Gorda at $2.10 and Fort Walton at $2.12.

Florida’s average price for a gallon of gas returned to a level below the national average which is now $2.18 per gallon. Florida, for the first time in months, saw the average price for gas exceed the national average last week.

Written By

Drew Dixon is a journalist of 40 years who has reported in print and broadcast throughout Florida, starting in Ohio in the 1980s. He is also an adjunct professor of philosophy and ethics at three colleges, Jacksonville University, University of North Florida and Florida State College at Jacksonville. You can reach him at drewdixonwriting@gmail.com.

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