Gas prices edge up, survey finds

Story highlights

  • Gas prices jump about 3 cents over two weeks, a survey finds
  • A recent drop in crude oil prices might not lead to lower gas prices, the publisher says
  • Events in Iran and Nigeria are adding to crude oil's "skittish" behavior, she says
Gas prices have edged up a few cents over the past two weeks despite a drop in crude oil prices, according to a survey published Sunday.
The average price of a gallon of regular is $3.39, the Lundberg Survey found.
The survey tallied prices at thousands of gas stations Friday.
The average price is 3 and a half cents higher than what the survey found two weeks earlier, said publisher Trilby Lundberg.
Crude oil prices slipped during that time, but mostly on the same day as the survey, so any effect on gas prices would not have showed up, she said.
And that drop in crude oil prices might not indicate a drop in gas prices anytime soon, Lundberg said, because it is too soon to say whether a downward trend in crude oilp rices is coming. "Crude oil has been very skittish," particularly over growing conflicts surrounding Iran and unrest in Nigeria, Lundberg said.
"And even if crude oil stays put, we may see a few more pennies up at the pump," she said. "Retailers' profit margin is suppressed and has been for more than a month, and they will need to try to recover some."
In the three weeks leading up to the survey two weeks ago, the price rose just over 12 cents -- so in the last two weeks, prices have slowed down their rise, Lundberg said.
The average price is 28 cents higher than it was a year ago.
Of the cities surveyed Friday, Salt Lake City had the lowest average price, at $2.94. The highest was in Los Angeles, at $3.71.
Here are average prices in some other cities:
Atlanta - $3.44
Boston - $3.46
Miami - $3.51
Baton Rouge, Louisiana - $3.26
St. Louis - $3.29
Denver - $2.95
Portland, Oregon - $3.43