EIA expects brief spike in gasoline prices

Aug. 8, 2012 at 8:30 AM

WASHINGTON, Aug. 8 (UPI) -- The Brent crude oil spot price is expected to increase in the second half of 2012, leading to a short-term spike in retail gasoline prices, a report said.

The U.S. Energy Department's Energy Information Administration said it expects Brent crude to average around $103 per barrel during the second half of the year, a $3.50 increase from the EIA's estimate in July.

"With higher crude oil prices, EIA has increased the average regular gasoline retail price forecast for the third quarter of 2012 to $3.49 per gallon from $3.39 per gallon in last month's outlook," the agency said in its August report.

An oil pipeline rupture in Wisconsin in late July, coupled with the disruption of a gasoline line in the state, lead to a regional spike in retail gasoline prices.

AAA, in its daily gasoline report, states that a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline in Chicago averaged $4.40 by Wednesday, a 50 cent increase from last month. The national average was reported by AAA at $3.65 for a gallon of regular unleaded, compared with $3.38 last month.

The EIA said that as area refineries come back into service, however, a previous supply gap in gasoline should disappear "almost entirely."

The agency expected regular gasoline retail prices to level out at around $3.53 for the year, however, the same as reported for 2011.

Related UPI Stories
Latest Headlines
Trending Stories
One arrested after Philadelphia college lockdown
Boehner delays House vote for new speaker
NASA releases thousands of Apollo mission photos on Flickr
Snowden: U.S. won't respond to offers to serve prison time
FDA approves new treatment for advanced lung cancer