The cost of gasoline surged nationwide in the past week, climbing an average of 10 cents a gallon after the recent attack on Saudi Arabian oil facilities caused a spike in oil prices, AAA said on Monday. However, experts predict prices will likely settle down soon.
California continues to have the most expensive gas in the country, with motorists paying an average of $3.74 for a gallon of regular unleaded, according to a news release from AAA.
At an increase of 11 cents per gallon, the Golden State saw the largest rise in pump prices along the West Coast. However, it was not among the top 10 largest weekly increases.
Kentucky experienced the biggest spike at 19 cents per gallon, followed by Michigan (18 cents), Georgia (17 cents) and Minnesota (16 cents), according to AAA. Maryland, Iowa, Delaware and Mississippi also saw prices climb by an average of 14 cents a gallon, while gas prices rose by about 13 cents in New Mexico and South Carolina.
Still, even with the spike, the national average was still 6 cents lower than last month and down an average of 19 cents at this time last year.
AAA and experts pointed to the attacks on Saudi Arabian oil facilities the weekend prior as the main factor. In the aftermath, crude oil increased as much as $10 a barrel, climbing to nearly $64, the release stated.
That pushed the national average cost of gasoline up 6 cents overnight last Tuesday, as some stations raised gas prices by as much as a quarter, according to AAA.
By the end of the week, barrels of crude oil were down to $58 per gallon, and gas prices stabilized.
But relief for motorists could be soon in sight, as experts predict the cost at the pump will likely level off soon.
“#GasPrices will likely settle down in the week ahead,” Patrick DeHaan, the head of petroleum analysis for fuel website GasBuddy.com, tweeted Sunday.
Breaking a 9-week streak, the national average price of gasoline has jumped nearly 11c/gal in the last week to $2.66/gal as attacks on Saudi Arabia caused oil prices to skyrocket. #GasPrices will likely settle down in the week ahead.
— Patrick De Haan ⛽️📊 (@GasBuddyGuy) September 23, 2019