AAA released a report this week showing the August began with gas prices in the Sunshine State being the highest they had been in almost seven years.
“Florida gas prices are inching lower after setting a new 2021 high last week. The state average jumped nearly 6 cents per gallon, briefly reaching $3.03 per gallon. That’s 2 cents more than the previous 2021 high (July), and was the highest daily average since October 2014,” AAA noted. “By Sunday, the state average inched 1-cent lower. The state average of $3.02 per gallon is 5 cents per gallon more than a week ago, 1-cent per gallon more than a month ago, and 54 cents per gallon more than this time last year.”
“Gas prices jumped early last week because of lower gasoline supplies and a weaker dollar,” said Mark Jenkins, a spokesman for AAA and the Auto Club Group. “However by the end of the week, futures prices dropped 8 percent on a stronger dollar and concerns about how the spread of COVID-19 could curb global fuel demand. If sustained, lower futures prices would enable gas prices to slip lower this week.”
AAA noted several factors leading to higher gas prices.
“Market watchers are increasingly concerned about the spread of COVID-19 as cases reach multi-month highs in the United States, and China limits domestic travel and imposes lockdowns in affected areas. On Friday, crude oil prices closed at $5 a barrel less than the week before. Meanwhile, gasoline futures dropped 11 cents per gallon. The downward trend carried over into the weekend. Late Sunday night, crude oil and gasoline futures traded at 2 percent less than Friday’s settlement,” AAA noted.
The West Palm Beach-Boca Raton area had the most expensive gas in the state with an average of $3.16 a gallon followed by Panama City at $3.13 a gallon and Tallahassee at $3.08 a gallon.
Punta Gorda had the least expensive gas in the state with an average of $2.96 a gallon, followed by Orlando and Jacksonville at $2.98 a gallon, the Fort Myers-Cape Coral area at $2.99 a gallon and the Tampa Bay market at $3.00 a gallon.