Retail gas prices held relatively steady since last week, according to AAA’s latest Fuel Gauge Report, with the average price for a gallon of regular, unleaded gasoline at $3.63 per gallon, four cents less than a week ago. This price is 13 cents higher than on the same day last year (July 29, 2012) and is the third highest price on record, according to AAA.
The national average price has increased 14 cents for the month as of July 29. AAA said it expects prices to continue to increase through the summer driving season. AAA said higher summertime demand for gasoline, along with more expensive crude oil prices, and possible supply disruptions caused by hurricanes in the Gulf Coast region, are likely to keep pushing prices upward.
On a regional basis, drivers in 44 states are seeing lower prices for gasoline compared to last week, but the majority of the declines are less than 3 cents, in 31 out of the 44 states. In seven states in the Midwest, retail gasoline prices fell by at least 5 cents, and in select states the price fell even further, for example in Ohio, the average gasoline price fell by 12 cents, in Ind. it fell by 17 cents, and in Mich. It fell by 18 cents.
Affecting the price of oil is unrest in the Middle East, for example in Egypt, where worries over unrest affecting the Suez Canal are pushing the price upward, and in Libya, which recently saw new reports of violence, AAA stated. At the close of trading on NYMEX on July 29,West Texas Intermediate crude oil settled at $104.55 per barrel.