A gallon of regular unleaded now costs $2.69, which is 44 cents higher than it was on Jan. 1.
 - Photo by Vince Taroc.

A gallon of regular unleaded now costs $2.69, which is 44 cents higher than it was on Jan. 1.

Photo by Vince Taroc.

Regular unleaded moved sharply higher to $2.69 per gallon for the week ending April 1, which is now 44 cents higher than it was on Jan. 1, according to AAA.

The national average price has moved 7 cents higher for the week and 27 cents from a month ago. The per-gallon price is only 4 cents higher than a year ago.

"Three months ago motorists could find gas for less than $2.50 at 78% of gas stations. Today, you can only find gas for that price at one-third of stations, which is likely giving sticker shock to motorists across the country," said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson. "Gasoline stocks have been steadily decreasing since early February causing spikes at the pump that are likely to continue for the coming weeks."

For the week, 26 states saw gasoline prices increase by at least 5 cents. States in the West Coast, Great Lakes, and Central regions saw the largest increase, according to AAA. About half of the states have cheaper year-over-year prices.

States with the largest weekly increases include Florida (13 cents), California (12 cents), Indiana (11 cents), Georgia (11 cents), Idaho (9 cents), Kentucky (9 cents), Washington (9 cents), Oregon (8 cents), Nevada (8 cents), and Ohio (8 cents).

States with the most expensive markets include California ($3.61), Hawaii ($3.45), Washington ($3.16), Oregon ($3.05), Nevada ($2.98), Alaska ($2.89), Washington, D.C. ($2.83), Illinois ($2.82), Pennsylvania ($2.80), and Michigan ($2.76).

Meanwhile, the average price of a gallon of diesel fell two-tenths of a cent to $3.078 per gallon, which is 3.6 cents higher than a year ago, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

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