Gasoline prices in Sacramento and throughout California are closing out the week in full escalation mode.
GasBuddy.com, which does a daily survey of more than 700 gas outlets in the Sacramento area, said the average retail price of gas in the region Friday was $2.45 a gallon, an 11-cent increase in just the last three days.
Statewide, the average at-the-pump cost was $2.55, up from $2.45 on Tuesday and $2.43 last week.
Golden State stations that were selling gas for less than $2 a gallon on Monday were no longer doing so, said Los Angeles-based GasBuddy analyst Allison Mac. “I’m not seeing a single one now... Bye, bye $2 gas.”
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Mac said the recent surge in wholesale fuel costs is the primary driver, and “crude (oil) is factoring into it.”
Crude oil, which recently plunged into the $45-a-barrel range, surged more than $4 Friday and briefly traded at more than $53 on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
Mac said there’s a possible impact of a United Steelworkers union strike, which this week idled nearly 4,000 workers at nine U.S. refineries, including Tesoro’s California facilities in Carson and Martinez.
“Refinery strikes don’t typically impact production, but we’re trying to determine if that also is a factor,” Mac said.
Nationally, the average retail price of gas on Friday was $2.15, up from $2.04 last week, according to GasBuddy’s survey.
Call The Bee’s Mark Glover, (916) 321-1184.