Ouch! Gas Prices Hit a 6-Year Seasonal High

Forget those forecasts about stable gas prices this summer. Violence in Iraq is driving the price up.

Ouch! Gas Prices Hit a 6-Year Seasonal High Photo (cc) by kalleboo

Prepare yourself: The price at the pump is going up.

The escalating conflict in Iraq is driving gas prices higher. The pump price averaged $3.67 per gallon in the U.S. on Wednesday, the highest it’s been on that date in six years, USA Today said.

“Despite hopes for a less expensive summer, it looks like Americans are stuck paying above-average gas prices,” AAA spokesman Michael Green said.

The price of oil, which accounts for at least two-thirds of the cost of gasoline, is climbing to near nine-month highs. Iraq trails only Saudi Arabia in oil production among OPEC nations, Bloomberg says. It produced 3.3 million barrels of crude in May.

According to Bloomberg:

The jump in crude, driven by concern that the crisis in Iraq will disrupt supplies, may boost pump prices by 10 cents a gallon at a time when they normally drop, according to forecasts, including one from the [Energy Information Administration].

“If things deteriorate even more, the spike could be even bigger than that,” Phil Flynn, a senior market analyst at Price Futures Group in Chicago, said by telephone. “If it weren’t for the situation in Iraq, gasoline would be coming down by now. This will probably keep it elevated all summer. It’s really disappointing.”

Gas prices are already over $4 per gallon in Alaska, California and Hawaii, Bloomberg said.

Do you have any summer road trips planned? Will a spike in gas prices spoil your vacation travel? Share your thoughts below or on our Facebook page.

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