Florida gas prices climb past $3 per gallon again

A downward trend might be emerging though.

Floridians saw a midweek surge in gasoline prices last week that eased a bit over the weekend but still settled at more than $3 per gallon on average.

Florida’s average price for a gallon of gasoline was $3.02 per gallon Sunday, AAA — The Auto Club Group, reported Monday morning. That’s up 5 cents over the previous report.

Gas prices hit the new 2021 zenith of $3.03 per gallon late last week.

“Gas prices jumped early last week because of lower gasoline supplies and a weaker dollar,” AAA spokesperson Mark Jenkins said in a news release Monday. “However, by the end of the week, futures prices dropped 8% on a stronger dollar and concerns about how the spread of COVID-19 could curb global fuel demand. If sustained, lower futures prices would enable gas prices to slip lower this week.”

Nationally, gas costs $3.19 per gallon on average.

According to AAA, market watchers are increasingly concerned about the spread of COVID-19 as cases reach multi-month highs in the United States and as China limits domestic travel and imposes lockdowns in affected areas.

But late week, the economic trend began to reverse.

On Friday, crude oil prices closed at $5 a barrel less than the week before. Meanwhile, gasoline futures dropped 11 cents per gallon. The downward trend carried over into the weekend. Late Sunday night, crude oil and gasoline futures traded at 2% less than Friday’s settlement.

As has been the case for much of the summer, Florida’s best deals on gasoline come in Punta Gorda, according to AAA. Yet drivers there still paid an average of $2.96 per gallon on Sunday. Gas costs $2.98 per gallon in Orlando and Jacksonville, $2.99 in the Fort-Myers-Cape Coral area, $3.00 in Tampa Bay, and $3.02 in Miami.

Florida’s toughest gas buy Sunday was in the West Palm Beach-Boca Raton area, where prices averaged $3.16 per gallon. Panama City drivers were paying an average of $3.13; Tallahassee drivers, $3.08; Fort Lauderdale, $3.05; and Pensacola, $3.03.

Scott Powers

Scott Powers is an Orlando-based political journalist with 30+ years’ experience, mostly at newspapers such as the Orlando Sentinel and the Columbus Dispatch. He covers local, state and federal politics and space news across much of Central Florida. His career earned numerous journalism awards for stories ranging from the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster to presidential elections to misplaced nuclear waste. He and his wife Connie have three grown children. Besides them, he’s into mystery and suspense books and movies, rock, blues, basketball, baseball, writing unpublished novels, and being amused. Email him at [email protected].


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