When prices for crude oil spiked in late summer, there was little immediate impact at gasoline stations around the Washington area. Now that has changed.
A gallon of regular gasoline averaged $2 at Washington area filling stations Thursday, according to data compiled by AAA, compared with $1.91 a month earlier and $1.56 a year earlier, or a 5 percent rise in the span of a month. The local price remains below its all-time high, not adjusted for inflation, of $2.05, reached June 5. The spike raises costs for anyone who drives, along with businesses that distribute goods or otherwise need a large automotive fleet. And some of those businesses may pass the increase on to consumers.
The AAA data, which the automotive group generates along with OPIS Energy Group and Wright Express LLC by surveying gas stations, shows that similar increases are underway with higher grades. Premium gasoline averaged $2.24 per gallon Thursday, up from $2.13 a month ago. Diesel fuel also was more expensive, at $2.29 per gallon Thursday, up from $2.13 a month earlier and $1.77 a year ago.
The region's highest gasoline prices are in the District, where retailers have higher rent, labor and gasoline taxes. A gallon of regular sold for $2.04 in the District on Thursday, compared with $1.93 in Virginia and $2 in Maryland.
-- Neil Irwin