Area motorists are not seeing what the rest of the state has already achieved. For the first time in more than six years the average price for a gallon of regular gas in Iowa has hit $3.
Today’s $3 average is up 14 cents from one month ago and 90 cents from this time last year; however, it remains 15 cents below the national average of $3.16, according to AAA. The last time Iowa motorists paid a statewide average of $3 for gas was Nov. 7, 2014.
Fuel prices have moved higher on a sharp increase in the cost of crude oil. Crude oil prices (WTI) recently traded above $76, a level not seen since November 2014. The price for a barrel of oil today is just above $72.60, bringing some hope that prices at the pump may soon peak.
“Robust gasoline demand and more expensive oil have pushed gas prices higher,” said Meredith Mitts, public affairs specialist for AAA-The Auto Club Group. “An increase in crude oil production to meet growing global demand is needed to bring some relief to motorists.”
A rebound in WTI back above $76 could increase gas prices by 10–20 cents or more, added Mitts.
As of today, Iowa motorists can still purchase gas for less than $3 at 70% of gas stations including almost all of those within the six county area.