17:00 PM

Crude Oil Price Spike Drags Gas Prices to New 2021 Highs

Florida gas prices surged 12 cents last week, rising from $3.05 to $3.17 per gallon

Single Gas Price - 3.17.jpg

Florida drivers are feeling even more pain at the pump this week, as the ripple effects from the pandemic continue to play out in the crude oil market. The price of crude surged last week, on concerns that what was already a tight global fuel market, could get even tighter this winter. And gas prices are being dragged along for the ride.

Florida gas prices surged 12 cents last week, rising from $3.05 to $3.17 per gallon. Sunday's state average ($3.17) was the highest daily average since October 2014.

"The recent jump at the pump is directly tied to rising futures prices," said Mark Jenkins, spokesman, AAA - The Auto Club Group. "The higher crude price raises the cost of producing gasoline. Unfortunately, it's not clear when these prices will come back down."

The price of US crude jumped 5% last week. For context, crude rarely exceeded $75 per barrel this year. However, on Friday, it briefly traded above $80, before ultimately settling at $79.31. That was the highest daily settlement since October 2014.

What's moving the market right now are concerns of what would happen if this winter is colder than normal. The issue is, natural gas prices in Europe and Asia have tripled - to a level that would be the equivalent of oil prices reaching $200 per barrel. This has speculators worried that the countries affected would turn to the oil market for heating and power generation. An oil market that is already extremely tight on supplies. Last year, global production declined, after the pandemic caused fuel demand to collapse. This year, demand has rebounded, but oil producers have not kept pace. Prior to the pandemic, the global market was oversupplied. Now demand outpaces supply.

Fortunately, the US may be shielded from the natural gas crunch, since US supplies are strong and very little of it is typically exported. Unfortunately, the US is not shielded by the tightness in the crude market - which has always been influenced by global factors.

Regional Prices

  • Most expensive metro markets – West Palm Beach-Boca Raton ($3.32), Fort Lauderdale ($3.21), Port St. Lucie ($3.20)
  • Least expensive metro markets – Pensacola ($3.12), Crestview-Fort Walton Beach ($3.14), Jacksonville ($3.14), Punta Gorda ($3.14)

Ways to Save on Gasoline

  • Combine errands to limit driving time.
  • Shop around for the best gas prices in your community.
  • Consider paying cash. Some retailers charge extra per gallon for customers who pay with a credit card.
  • Remove excess weight in your vehicle.
  • Drive conservatively. Aggressive acceleration and speeding reduces fuel economy.
  • Enroll in savings programs. AAA Members who enroll in Shell's Fuel Rewards program can save 5 cents per gallon when they fill up at Shell. Click here for more information.

Find Florida Gas Prices

(Price per gallon of regular unleaded gasoline)

Sunday Saturday Week Ago Month Ago One Year Ago Record High
National $3.269 $3.266 $3.196 $3.179 $2.188 $4.11 (7/17/2008)
Florida $3.174 $3.171 $3.049 $3.005 $2.167 $4.08 (7/17/2008)
Georgia $3.063 $3.058 $2.988 $2.980 $1.997 $4.16 (9/15/2008)
Click here to view current gasoline price averages

Gas Price Survey Methodology
AAA updates fuel price averages daily at www.GasPrices.AAA.com. Every day up to 130,000 stations are surveyed based on credit card swipes and direct feeds in cooperation with the Oil Price Information Service (OPIS) and Wright Express for unmatched statistical reliability. All average retail prices in this report are for a gallon of regular, unleaded gasoline.

About AAA - The Auto Club Group

The Auto Club Group (ACG) is the second largest AAA club in North America with more than 14 million members across 14 U.S. states, the province of Quebec and two U.S. territories. ACG and its affiliates provide members with roadside assistance, insurance products, banking and financial services, travel offerings and more. ACG belongs to the national AAA federation with more than 62 million members in the United States and Canada. AAA's mission is to protect and advance freedom of mobility and improve traffic safety. For more information, get the AAA Mobile app, visit AAA.com, and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.