Middle East unrest continues to drive up gas prices - East Valley Tribune: Business

Middle East unrest continues to drive up gas prices

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Posted: Thursday, February 24, 2011 3:13 pm | Updated: 2:56 pm, Fri Feb 25, 2011.

Across the state and country, motorists continue to pay more for fuel than they have in 28 months, according to a press release from AAA Arizona. Thursday's statewide average price was $3.256 per gallon, an increase of seven cents from last week. Nationwide, prices increased more than eight cents to $3.228 per gallon.

After trading in the mid $80s last week, the price of crude oil surpassed the $100 per barrel mark this week, a multi-year high for the commodity. AAA Arizona reports, "This in large part can be attributed to unrest in Libya, one of Africa's top oil producing countries. Conflict in the country has caused market anxiety over the possible disruption of Libyan crude, or the spread of unrest to the Persian Gulf."

"Following continued unrest in the Middle East and a considerable rise in crude prices, motorists can expect the price of gasoline at the pump to rise in the coming days," said Linda Gorman, director of communications and public affairs for AAA Arizona. "However, given market volatility, it's too soon to tell the extent of the impact the situation in Libya will have on retail markets."

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