WASHINGTON – The average U.S. gasoline price at the pump surged to its highest level in 11 weeks, as crude oil costs jumped more than $4 last week, the government's top energy forecasting agency said Monday.
The national price for regular unleaded gasoline averaged $2.34 a gallon, up 1.6 cents over the last week, and 48 cents higher from a year ago, based on the federal Energy Information Administration's survey of service stations.
The latest pump price is the most expensive since Nov. 7, the EIA said.
The much bigger Lundberg survey, which covers 7,000 stations nationwide, showed the average price for U.S. gasoline climbed 3.1 cents over the last two weeks to $2.33 a gallon.
Prices for crude oil — about half the cost of making gasoline — rose more than $4 to over $68 a barrel last week as international tensions sparked supply jitters.
Traders feared a disruption in Iran's oil exports over a nuclear dispute with the West. Meanwhile, militants threatened Nigeria's oil production.
In the EIA's latest weekly survey, the Central Atlantic states again had the most expensive regional gasoline, with the price up 3 cents to $2.45 a gallon. Miami topped the survey of cities, with gasoline up 1.5 cents to $2.46 a gallon.
The Rocky Mountain states again had the cheapest gasoline at $2.22 a gallon, up 1.9 cents. Among major cities, Denver had the cheapest fuel, down 1.5 cents to $2.22 a gallon.
The EIA report also showed prices, rounded to the nearest penny, up 2.9 cents at $2.45 in New York City; down 0.4 cent at $2.44 in Los Angeles; up 2 cents at $2.37 in Boston; down 0.8 cent at $2.35 in Chicago; up 1.4 cents to $2.30 in Cleveland; and down 0.1 cent to $2.27 in Houston.
Separately, the average diesel fuel price paid by truckers increased 2.3 cents over the last week to $2.47 a gallon, up 51 cents compared with a year earlier, the EIA said.
Truckers in the New England region again paid the most for diesel at $2.67 a gallon, up half a penny from last week. The Midwest states had the cheapest diesel at $2.42 a gallon, up 1.5 cents.