Iran tensions, declining inventories cited for rising gasoline prices |

Iran tensions, declining inventories cited for rising gasoline prices

Brian C. Rittmeyer

The Fourth of July isn’t the reason for rising gasoline prices, an industry analyst says.

“Motorists can blame escalating tensions between the U.S. and Iran for higher oil prices, declining inventories and even a potential U.S./China trade deal,” said Patrick DeHaan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy.

In Pittsburgh, gas prices are up 5.4 cents per gallon over last week, averaging $2.96, according to GasBuddy. That’s 5.6 cents per gallon less than a month ago, and 12.4 cents per gallon less than a year ago.

Prices in Pittsburgh range from $2.69 up to $3.09, a difference of 40 cents per gallon. Statewide, the range is from $2.59 per gallon up to $3.09.

The national average is up 4.6 cents per gallon to $2.71. That’s 10.5 cents less than a month ago, and 13.8 cents less than a year ago.

Nationally, prices range from a low of $1.97 per gallon up to $4.99 — a difference of $3.02, according to GasBuddy.

“While gas prices this July 4 are nearly guaranteed to be slightly under last year’s level, we will continue to close that gap as prices are likely to continue rising, especially as several states slapped those traveling for the holiday with higher gasoline taxes,” DeHaan said. “The second half of the summer may end up being pricier than the first half, especially if the U.S. and China can get basically any trade deal in place and/or tensions continue to remain high between the U.S. and Iran.

”And not to forget hurricane season’s peak in the second half, it may get ugly at the pump.”

Brian C. Rittmeyer is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Brian at 724-226-4701, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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