Florida drivers still are finding little relief at the gas pump as prices remain above $3 per gallon heading into October, though they did inch downward in the past week, AAA — The Auto Club Group reported Monday.
Florida’s average price for a gallon of gasoline was at $3.05. That’s 2 cents lower than in late September, and 5 cents lower than a peak a couple of weeks ago, but well above the rest of this year, and still higher than anything seen in several years.
Prices, high all summer, went up even more in September after Hurricane Ida closed down some production refineries in Louisiana.
Nationally, the average price of a gallon of gasoline is $3.20, according to AAA.
The news comes against usual trends, as autumn gas prices usually are lower than summer.
“After weeks of declines, gas prices face renewed upward pressure after the price of crude oil rose 3% last week,” said AAA spokesman Mark Jenkins. “Crude prices have remained elevated this year, because unlike the years before the pandemic — where supplies far outpaced demand — the global fuel market has tightened. Many countries reduced fuel production, due to the pandemic, and are now struggling to keep pace with returning demand.”
It could get worse before it gets better, and Monday should be a big day for setting gas prices.
The OPEC+ meeting cartel will discuss increasing oil production. Oil prices rose last week on concerns that the cartel’s planned 400,000 barrel per day increase would not be enough to meet global fuel demand. Now, there are reports that OPEC+ is considering doubling the rate increase, AAA reported.
Once again, drivers are finding the best deals in Punta Gorda, where gas is averaging $2.97 per gallon, according to AAA. In Jacksonville, gas runs $2.99 per gallon; The Villages, Jacksonville, and Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, $3.00; and Pensacola, $3.03.
The worst place to buy gasoline is in West Palm Beach-Boca Raton, where it costs an average of $3.23, AAA reported. In Fort Lauderdale and Naples, the average is $3.10; Miami, $3.08.