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Pump prices headed upwards
However, cheaper prices expected for fall and winter
new deh gas prices graphic web

 Average retail gasoline prices in Kansas have risen 9.6 cents per gallon in the past week, averaging $2.15 Thursday, according to GasBuddy’s daily survey of 1,329 gas outlets in Kansas. This compares with the national average that has increased 6.5 cents per gallon in the last week to $2.20. 

Great Bend and Larned fell in line with $2.18. In Lyons, the price ranged from $1.99 to $2.19.

Lows in the state came at Lebo, $1.90, Leavenworth, $1.91, and Garden City, $1.93. The Highs were at Beloit and Deerfield, $2.39, and Arkansas City, $2.36.

Including the change in gas prices in Kansas during the past week, prices yesterday were 34.5 cents per gallon lower than the same day one year ago and are 14 cents per gallon higher than a month ago. The national average has increased 4.3 cents per gallon during the last month and stands 37.9 cents per gallon lower than this day one year ago.

“With the benchmark WTI crude climbing more than $8 per barrel since the beginning of the month to $48 per barrel and Brent above $50, we should not be surprised to see the average price of gas in many areas nearly 10 cents higher than it was a week ago,” said Gregg Laskoski, senior petroleum analyst for GasBuddy.

“While wholesale gasoline prices reflect the run-up for crude, it may be short-lived since the clock is ticking on the rally for retail prices with just two weeks left before the Labor Day weekend and summer’s official end. So  consumers should be prepared for modest increases this week that may actually taper off as we approach the holiday weekend.”     

According to the American Automobile Association, though the Kansas average is over two dollars, this is still the lowest average since the low in 2004 of $1.87 this week. The peak over the last 16 years on this date was $3.65 in 2012. 

“Following a streak where the national retail average price of gasoline dropped on 54 of 55 days, pump prices have now increased on 12 of the past 17 days and each of the past eight,” said Jim Hanni, AAA Spokesperson. The national average price is the lowest price since 2004.

GasBuddy’s historical data notes gasoline prices on this date in Kansas have ranged widely over the last five years: $2.53 in 2015, $3.29 in 2014, $3.48 in 2013, $3.64 in 2012 and $3.48 in 2011.

Also influencing gasoline prices have been refinery issues that have exacerbated price increases in areas supplied by these facilities, the AAA reports. This includes a number of refineries in the Gulf Coast that are undergoing unplanned maintenance as a result of flooding in Louisiana and refinery fire in Texas.  Drivers in the Midwest and Central U.S. continue to see the most dramatic recent price movement as the impact of outages – including the BP refinery in Whiting, Ind. – has pushed prices higher.  

While pump prices in the vast majority of states (42) have moved higher over the past week, domestic gasoline supplies remain high and oil prices remain relatively lower compared to recent years, meaning pump prices are likely to remain cheap through the rest of the summer and into the fall, AAA notes. Prices could even dip back below $2.00 per gallon once the summer driving season is complete and as many regions are allowed to transition to selling cheaper-to-produce winter-blend gasoline. 

However, a major market-moving event, like a hurricane or further increasing crude oil costs, could still offset this decline and temporarily drive pump prices higher, AAA notes.