Utah gas prices up 26 cents since February

Published: Tuesday, March 11 2014 12:50 p.m. MDT

AAA Utah reported Tuesday that the current average price for a gallon of regular gasoline is $2.90 — down 50 cents from last month.

Amy Sancetta, Associated Press

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SALT LAKE CITY — The cost to fill a gas tank is climbing again in the Beehive State.

The average price in Utah Tuesday was $3.35 per gallon for regular gasoline, about 4 cents higher than a week ago and 26 cents higher than last month. Currently, only 10 states have prices lower than Utah.

According to AAA Utah, the state’s fuel prices are following a typical yearly trend by increasing as spring approaches. Even with a double-digit increase this past month, Utah’s prices are relatively low when compared with the rest of the country, said AAA Utah spokeswoman Rolayne Fairclough.

Nationwide, the average price was $3.49 per gallon — up 18 cents over last month, but 21 cents lower than a year ago. Hawaii registered the highest average price at $4.16 — the only state reporting prices over $4. In the lower 48 states, California was the high-price leader at $3.91 per gallon. Alabama, Mississippi and Tennessee tied for the lowest average price in the country at $3.22 a gallon.

While prices in nearly every state moved higher in the past month, the majority of motorists are enjoying substantial year-over-year savings, Fairclough said.

"All of the Utah cities tracked by AAA reported a double-digit increase since last month’s gasoline report," she said. "The lowest average price — $3.31 for a gallon of regular gasoline — can be found in Logan, (while) Moab reported the highest average price at $3.52."

She attributed the rapidly escalating tensions in Ukraine as one of the main factors in rising crude prices, which hit a greater than six-month high this month.

"The Russian-Ukrainian conflict and other geopolitical tensions are likely to keep oil prices from falling too far in the near future,” Fairclough said.

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