Gas Prices Have Jumped $0.20 In The Past Two Weeks

Gas prices have spiked in the last two weeks, reaching levels last seen during the peak of the summer driving season, says the AP. The increase in gas prices has retailers worried that consumers who are putting more money in their gas tanks will buy fewer gifts during the upcoming holiday season.

The spike in prices is being blamed on a decrease in gas production and a weak dollar — not on an increase in demand.

“Until consumers are confident in their jobs and future income, they’re going to be very hesitant in spending,”[a senior economist with Moody’s Economy.com] told the AP. “And higher gas prices are just another excuse to keep money in the pocket.”

Retail gas prices nearing summer highs [AP]
(Photo:ibelli)

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  1. TheSpatulaOfLove says:

    Retailers should also be worried with the cost of distribution as well. With fuel prices being higher, cost of delivery will be higher.

    Not good…

    • TheSpatulaOfLove says:

      @TheSpatulaOfLove:

      Argh – bad grammar – Wish I had an edit button!

    • redskull says:

      @TheSpatulaOfLove: Retailers should quit worrying about gas prices and start worrying about the fact that we all already have way too much sh!t and we don’t need any more, even if it is Xmas.

    • admiral_stabbin says:

      @TheSpatulaOfLove: How many distribution firms redacted their “fuel surcharge” when fuel prices halved?

      I’ll call shenanigans if distribution costs are higher now than they were at any point in the past two years…

      • Prince of Zemunda says:

        @admiral_stabbin: Exactly. I think the LA Times had an article this summer asking why grocery prices hadn’t gone down and they said it was because their distrubution had bought a future amount of fuel at a higher cost. So we better be covered!!!!!

  2. MostlyHarmless says:

    They arent hurting me YET, but then I also do not drive a lot. But they will start hurting when the prices for other things go up.

    And this article is a “get out of my head” moment.

    Going home for lunch, I saw the gas price was $2.59. An hour later, on the way back, it was now $2.69.

    Just a couple of weeks back, it was $2.39.

    • Admiral_John says:

      @MostlyHarmless: I used to work at a small gas station part-time to help pay for my son’t braces. I had to drive past the station on my way to my regular job everyday, and one day I drove in (this was in 2004) gas was $1.69. When I went to lunch and passed the station it was $1.79 and when I went to work my shift there it was $1.89.

    • darkforcesjedi says:

      @MostlyHarmless: Last time I bought gas (2 weeks ago) I paid $2.19/gal. It is now $2.74/gal. I was holding off on buying gas again til prices started coming back down, but it looks like I screwed myself. They just keep going up.

    • kamel5547 says:

      @MostlyHarmless: On the other hand prices in CA haven’t changed in quite a while… $2.99 a gallon pretty much everywhere I see.

    • Eyebrows McGee (now with double the baby!) says:

      @MostlyHarmless: They’re not hurting me yet either, but I did get a little lecture from my husband about hauling around a box of paper in my trunk (that I have to drop off for a charity thing and I’ve had some issues managing the actual dropping off) reducing my gas mileage and “gas prices are way up this week!”

      I decided not to tell him about the SECOND box of paper in my back seat, which is a bunch of xeroxes to hand out to students this week. What he doesn’t know doesn’t result in me getting lectured ….

      • mazzic1083 says:

        @Eyebrows McGee (now with more baby!): Haha I love to hear a good story about marriage politics/relationships.

        I was noticing the price going up here in MD but wasn’t sure if the rest of the country was seeing the same effects. Headline news/Robin Meade hasn’t really reported on it much in the mornings.

      • PølάrβǽЯ says:

        @Eyebrows McGee (now with more baby!): It’s PAPER. He’d throw a shit fit if he knew I always drive around with a 50lb tow chain, gallon of Dex-Cool, gallon of windshield fluid, two quarts of 5w-30, jumper cables and 12v tire pump.

        BUT, I’ve yet to ever get stuck with a flat, low oil or coolant, a dead battery, or have had to call a tow truck.

    • blash says:

      @MostlyHarmless: Here in Los Angeles it’s been around $3.05 – $3.15 for a while now. Haven’t seen it at under $3 since I got back here at the end of this summer.

      Even saw it at $3.79 with supreme going for $3.99 at one place on Pico (and people were filling up there, too… screw them).

    • yevarechecha says:

      @MostlyHarmless: I’m glad you said this. The gas stations near my apartment have jumped so much so fast in the last week or so that I thought I had been hallucinating the earlier prices. I saw $2.32 going through Langley Park a little while ago and now that same station is $2.56.

      However, remembering the $4.25 of last summer, this still doesn’t seem that bad to me.

  3. bloggerX says:

    I thought the prices were going down now since the summer is over! Doesn’t matter for me, I take public transportation nearly everywhere I go, the Explorer is just for the weekends!

  4. Kimaroo - 100% Pure Natural Kitteh says:

    I’ve been noticing the increase and wondering why it was happening.. but really any excuse will do.

    • h3llc4t, breaker of office dress codes says:

      @Kimaroo – No Stars Upon Thars: Same here. I usually just put $10 or $15 in at a time unless I’m using Giant Eagle FuelPerks, and I’ve noticed the last few times that my car doesn’t go as long between fill-ups. (For some reason I always forget how many gallons I get each time, but I can remember that my last stop made it 6 days and this time it was only 5.)

    • redskull says:

      @Kimaroo – No Stars Upon Thars: There is no reason why, other than the oil companies decided they need another billion.

      There was a time a year or two back when price increases were always accompanied by an explanation from the oil companies, albeit a lame one (we don’t have enough refineries, there was a hurricane nowhere near our drilling rig, it was cold out and we didn’t feel like working). But they seem to have stopped issuing the excuses and just raise and lower them at their discretion.

  5. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot says:

    Driver demand goes up, prices go up. Driver demand goes down, prices go up. Heck a butterfly can fart in China, and they’ll find a reason to jack the price of gas up.

    • oblivious87 says:

      @Whiskey Tango Foxtrot: Did you just ignore all the reasoning behind why gasoline prices are going up?

      Crude oil isn’t necessarily the problem, its the people who refine it into gasoline and the other products. Gasoline which has been their pay dirt is no longer in demand like it used to, as a result, the profits from producing it aren’t worth it, so they are shutting down refineries.

      As a result, supply goes down and with the winter months closing in, demand is slowly increasing because not as many people are oh so willing to drive to school or wait for the bus. So while you’re partially right, the weak dollar and decreased demand from last year are more to blame then the supply… the small increase in supply is being magnified by other factors.

  6. rhys1882 says:

    Interesting. Prices have actually gone down a little in my area, but I did notice they seemed higher in San Francisco when I was there last week. I live in the country though, so not sure how that factors in.

  7. gStein_*|bringing starpipe back|* says:

    $0.20/gal over 15 gallons is $3… 15 gallons lasts me 2 weeks, give or take.
    that’s less than $0.25/day – not my biggest concern at the moment.

  8. pecan 3.14159265 says:

    Mr. Pi drives more now than ever. His commute is up to about 50 minutes since we moved, but the flip side is that I no longer drive, save money on my commute (closer to my workplace) and we sold the other car.

    I have to keep reminding myself that moving was a good decision because I save about $3 every day by being closer to the city, but he spends more on gas every day.

  9. KyleOrton says:

    That’s silly. Everyone knows that energy isn’t part of CPI. Spend spend spend.

  10. tim_hunter says:

    Did anybody really think prices would go anywhere but up, and sooner rather than later? I anticipated higher prices and traded my 14mpg SUV for a Toyota Prius in the “Cash for Clunkers” program. The higher gas prices go the better value the Prius is for me.

    • henrygates says:

      @tim_hunter: Congrats on the Prius. I think everyone knows gas prices will continue to go up. $20,000 will buy a lot of gas though.

    • MrEvil says:

      @tim_hunter: You do realize that you will never even come close to breaking even right? You’d have to put 30,000 miles a year on the car and gas would have to be $5/gal before you saw any reasonable ROI on that prius? And that’s just factoring the cost of fuel ALONE. Not all the other things you need to take into consideration such as insurance, higher taxes (if your local governments levvy personal property tax on vehicles). Not to mention cost of maintainance.

      I mean if you wanted a new car and needed a new form of transportation, that’s fine. However if you think you’re getting ahead or are savvy by purchasing a new car thinking you’ll make back its initial cost on the fuel savings alone, you just drank the marketing kool-aid.

      The Prius is a nice car, don’t get me wrong, but seriously spending money in order to save money is a zero sum game.

      • Thricebanned says:

        @MrEvil: Plus the added benefit of having the taxpayers help pay for it.

        If only Ed Begley Jr. would market the plans for his car that runs solely on his own self satisfaction.

    • darkforcesjedi says:

      @tim_hunter: Last business trip I went on I ended up with a 2009 Prius rental (it had 2 miles on it so I assume I was the first to rent it). I decided to do a fuel economy test. I immediately refueled it once I left the airport and reset the fuel economy and trip mileage counters.

      After a week of driving, the dash was displaying an average fuel economy of 55.8 mpg. Not bad, right? I would have thought so until I went to refill it before returning it. Total distance driven was 262 miles, about 75% highway miles. Fuel consumed was 6.82 gallons. That gives an actual fuel economy of 38.4 mpg. So the car was embellishing the fuel economy by 45%.

      In the end, the fuel economy is not much better than I get in my $11000 2007 Chevrolet Cobalt with a manual transmission and careful driving habits (35 mpg).

  11. JimBoSlobish says:

    Yes, they are beginning to hurt. This, and I’m looking to get a Mustang GT that’s tuned to for 93 octane next year. Not a good outlook for me.

  12. Skankingmike says:

    who cares why it goes up or down? Problem is why aren’t we focusing on alternatives other than Electric and gas?

    Hybrids are worthless. The solution is to create a system similar if not exact to our current, Liquid model, and instead of destroying millions of jobs you reassign them

    Bioengineering has offered us algae based biodiesel. you would grow it in vats and refine it, aka using similar facilities rather than removing them.

    The drillers will have to find new jobs but everybody else can easily fall back into daily routine. Electric model doesn’t help and in fact destroys millions of jobs if not billions.

    • pecan 3.14159265 says:

      @Skankingmike: We care why it’s going up or down because while the engineers and scientists are working on alternative fuels, we the consumers still have to get our asses to work every day and make a living for ourselves. That’s why. It’s grand to worry about the bigger picture, but in the meantime, people aren’t going to stop going to work because gas got more expensive. It just makes going to work a little more expensive, and takes money out of their pockets, money that they might really need for bills or groceries.

      • Skankingmike says:

        @pecan 3.14159265: I have an 11 gallon tank. It costs me 2.2 more dollars now a week than it did. I can’t help it if some people went out and bought huge beast machines and drive them long distances.

        I bought a small economical car that gets 32/35 mpg.

        So that 2.20 isn’t breaking my bank per week. its under 10 extra dollars a month. If that breaks your bank then you need to seriously rethink life.

        I laughed a ton when it was 4 a gallon and wished it would go to 10 in NJ so I can see people panic, I’d still be fine. Would I like 100 dollar fill ups? No, but it would defiantly wake up those idiots with 10-17mpg beasts.

        • Naame says:

          @Skankingmike: You can’t just blame the gas guzzlers. We are almost up to 10% unemployment. You know what that sort of thing means? It means that a lot of families who were previously used to having two incomes are now dealing with a single income and sometimes that single income only exists because that one lucky person who managed to get another job is driving a solid hour or more both to and from work.

          Even when you are driving a very gas friendly car that sort of scenario still hurts a lot and it is common right now. People are willing to commute very long distances these days.

  13. jeffbone says:

    Well, since Citibank helpfully (and unilaterally) took away my Shell card last week, I haven’t been buying as much gas…well, Shell gas, anyway.

  14. angryneo says:

    /lives in Texas where fuel is ALWAYS cheap! Yeehaw!

  15. pot_roast says:

    Even the head guy at OPEC recently stated that there’s no reason for this – other than speculation and ‘investors.’

    That’s exactly what’s going on.

    • Fineous K. Douchenstein says:

      @pot_roast: Agreed. There seems to be nothing here going on other than the stock market showing an increase, and gas is following suit with no real reason.

  16. Beef Supreme says:

    YAY! Unregulated speculating is back, this is how I know the economy is recovering! Surely the days of milk and honey and $4.00 gas are soon to follow!

    Oh wait, all of those things suck. So what happened to all this change we were supposed to be getting and/or experiencing? This sure feels like the same old B.S….

    • Naame says:

      @dfens42: You know what never changes? The moment the Dems call out for more market regulation due to abuse within the system the Right starts crying about how the government should stop meddling. The moment that the market starts abusing everyone’s wallet they start crying about how there isn’t enough “change” and how it is all “the same” blah blah blah.

    • blash says:

      @dfens42: $4 a gallon is conservative. Next summer it’ll be up to over $5/gallon, mark my words.

  17. jonnypage says:

    in Edmonton it was 79.9c/L last week, and jumped to 89.9c/L overnight. Ugg.

  18. Cant_stop_the_rock says:

    Not hurting me at all. I work from home, and the wife’s office is only 6 miles away.

  19. lincolnparadox says:

    I guess it’s time to start visiting this website again:

    [gasbuddy.com]

    Back when gas was $4 a gallon, I would save anywhere from 10 to 20 cents a gallon just by choosing a different station on the way home. Or waiting to fill up when we went to shopping in the city.

    That electric car is looking pretty good…

  20. frodoUnderhill says:

    Yay for carpooling in a hybrid! So I’m not feeling it directly but honestly what’s hurting us is the grocery prices that never went back down after the last time gas was so expensive.

  21. mythago says:

    Long work-related drives make the differences in price almost hilarious. Gas is 20 cents a gallon more in San Francisco than if you get outside the city. Costco and Safeway ‘member prices’ are 30 cents less.

  22. Grrrrrrr, now with two buns made of bacon. says:

    Remember all of those speculators that were found innocent of driving up the cost of oil a couple of years ago?…Well, the market is back and they’re speculating again, but of course, this has absolutely nothing to do with the price of oil because the government said so. It’s all supply and demand, or so we’re told. Funny, though, I don’t see any spike in demand, and thanks to all those cash-for-clunkers cars that were taken off the road, we should be looking at least 25% less demand, right?

    Just wait until the economy comes back into full swing in a couple of years..back up to $4.00 a gallon we go (speculators + demand = OMG $$$).

  23. StanTheManDean says:

    Fuel Surcharge?

    Here is an interesting read:

    [www.dogwoodceramics.com]

  24. mythago says:

    @MostlyHarmless: It is hurting you, just not in a direct way that you can see. It’s not as though the people who drive “things” to where you can buy or use them pay less for their gas.

  25. B says:

    Fortunately, I’m getting everybody gas for Christmas.