Gas prices turn upward

JONESBORO — As temperatures rise, so do gas prices.

And prices are expected to continue climbing into August, according to AAA Auto Club South.

AAA spokeswoman Jessica Brady said the hikes have been similar the past two years, as retail gas prices surge following the Fourth of July holiday.

Regular unleaded gas jumped about a dime per gallon on average this past week in metro Atlanta and across the Southeast region, according to AAA’s Daily Fuel Gauge Report.

The report revealed Monday that local motorists paid an average $3.48 per gallon for regular unleaded, which is 17 cents a gallon more than a year ago and 11 cents more than last week.

Brady said the jump in price was to be expected as oil has traded above $100 per barrel for more than two weeks.

She said tensions in Egypt, along with positive economic news and a decrease in oil supplies, pushed crude prices beyond a 12-month high. Oil closed last Friday at $105.95 per barrel on the NYMEX — $2.73 more than the week prior.

“Gas prices are on the rise and will continue to follow the upward trend for the next few weeks,” she said. “This upward trend has occurred during the past two years and will likely happen again this year as demand for crude oil increases across the globe and geopolitical tensions remain.”

The Southeast continues to fair better than the nation overall as average prices remain below the $3.61 national average.