WASHINGTON – The retail price of gasoline rose by about 2 cents last week to average $2.12 a gallon nationwide, the Energy Department (search) reported Monday.
The weekly government survey said the average price nationwide of regular-grade gasoline increased by 1.9 cent to $2.116 per gallon, or 8.2 cents a gallon higher than the same time a year ago.
Pump prices were highest on the West Coast even after a 3-cent decline, averaging $2.327 a gallon, and cheapest in the Gulf Coast, where motorists paid on average $2.028 a gallon. In the Midwest, gas averaged $2.05 per gallon.
One of the key factors underpinning the current price of gasoline is the high cost of oil — the result of strong demand, tight global supplies and geopolitical uncertainties.
Light sweet crude for July delivery fell 54 cents to $54.49 per barrel Monday on the New York Mercantile Exchange (search). Oil prices are roughly 41 percent higher than a year ago.