Prices at the pump — up 4 cents the past week to a national average of $3.52 a gallon — could climb another 15 cents or higher over the next two weeks. A year ago, the national average was $3.38.
"It's getting ugly,'' says Patrick DeHaan, senior analyst for GasBuddy.com. "First and foremost, the political problems in Egypt are driving crude oil prices, but there has also been a sharp drop in oil supplies the past two weeks. This is coming at a time when demand is at its annual July peak."
Egypt is not a major oil supplier, but ongoing political woes threaten Middle Eastern shipments and were the catalyst behind crude oil prices rising to 15-month highs earlier this week. Benchmark West Texas crude oil eased 1.5% to $104.91 a barrel Thursday. Wholesale gas prices — up 30 cents to 50 cents a gallon on some markets since late June — rose 0.8% to $3.04 a gallon for mid-August delivery. Typically, pump prices are about 75 cents higher. Read more >>