PARKERSBURG - Gasoline prices in West Virginia rose by 19 cents to $3.628 a gallon this week, according to AAA East Central.
This compares to the average gasoline price last week in the state of $3.439 and the average price this time last year of $3.431.
Tuesday's national average price for regular unleaded gasoline was $3.635 a gallon, AAA reported. This price is two cents higher than one month ago, 15 cents more expensive than one week ago and 24 cents higher than the same day last year.
The national average has increased for nine days in a row, but remains almost 16 cents lower than the peak price this year of $3.79 a gallon on Feb. 27, AAA said.
Gasoline prices appeared to have hit a summer low of $3.47 on July 7, near the same date as the seasonal low price in recent years. In 2011, the national average bottomed at $3.54 a gallon on June 30. In 2012 it reached as low as $3.33 on July 2.
The national average is 50 cents below the all-time daily high of $4.11 a gallon on July 17, 2008.
Drivers in most states paid more for gasoline Monday than one week before, AAA said. Motorists in the Midwest are seeing the most dramatic increase, led by a spike of 32 cents in Indiana and 30 cents in Michigan.
Prices started rising sharply in recent weeks because of new refinery issues, continued tight supplies and higher crude oil prices, AAA said.
Expensive crude oil costs have pressured gasoline prices higher across the country. Events and unrest in Egypt have been a primary factor in surging oil prices, AAA said.
While Egypt is not considered a major oil producer, its proximity to the strategically important Suez Canal and major oil producing nations raises concern of a potential disruption to supply should violence escalate or spread, AAA said.
AAA East Central is a not-for-profit association with 82 local offices in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, New York and Kentucky servicing 2.7 million members.