AAA Reports Crude Oil Prices Up, Summer Gas Prices Expected Above $2

MINNEAPOLIS, June 14 /PRNewswire/ — Crude oil prices, which had fallen below $50 per barrel in May, surged higher in June and are now trading near $55. This increase boosted national gas prices in the past two weeks, too, which currently average $2.13 per gallon.

According to AAA, this stubbornly high cost of crude oil likely will mean motorists will continue to pay pump prices in excess of $2 per gallon during the summer months. On the other hand, it appears the record high national average price of $2.28 sent on April 11, 2005, will not be revisited in the next few months, barring any major refining or distribution disruptions.

“OPEC has steadily increased their oil production this year to help dampen high energy prices and is expected to agree to another increase — 500,000 barrels per day — at their June 15 meeting in Vienna,” said Dawn Duffy, AAA spokesman. “Financial markets appear to have already factored in this anticipated move into current oil pricing, however, so a formal declaration is not expected to impact prices.”

Reports for June 14, 2005, reflect the following average prices per gallon for self-serve, regular unleaded gas:

Current Month Ago Year Ago

National $2.13 $2.17 $1.99
Minnesota $2.02 $2.01 $1.88
Duluth $2.04 $2.02 $1.90
Minneapolis/St. Paul $2.01 $2.01 $1.85
Rochester $2.01 $1.98 $1.88
St. Cloud $2.00 $2.00 $1.90

AAA’s Fuel Gauge Report is based upon data from the Oil Price Information Service, the nation’s most comprehensive source of petroleum pricing statistics, and can be found at http://www.fuelgaugereport.com/ .

AAA offers automotive, travel, insurance and financial services to more than 45 million members in the United States and Canada. AAA Minnesota/Iowa is part of The Auto Club Group, with 4.1 million members in eight Midwest states. AAA Minneapolis serves more than 175,000 members in Hennepin County.

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