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Gas Prices Reach Lowest Independence Day Levels In Decade

Going down?

Drivers got a taste of freedom from high prices at the gas pump over the long Independence Day weekend. But these low prices may soon be a thing of the past.

Gas prices have been flirting with going under the $2-a-gallon mark for a couple of weeks now, and were at their lowest price for the July 4th holiday in over a decade.  

Mark Jenkins of AAA says the reason is demand is not quite as high as last year. And oil prices took a dive earlier this year than last year to around $45 a barrel. He says that makes the cost of producing gasoline that much cheaper.

"The average price in Tampa today is $2.02," he said. "On Independence Day, they were the lowest price for the holiday in 13 years. So people have been saving money at the pump."

But he says the price of oil picked up several days ago, which means that wholesale prices at the pump may surge from five to 10 cents a gallon in the next week and a half.

"All good things come to an end, and we had hoped to hang on to these low prices a little bit longer, like we did last year," Jenkins said. "Prices kind of moved up in August last year, but this year it looks like they're going to be increasing a little bit sooner."


Steve Newborn is a WUSF reporter and producer at WUSF covering environmental issues and politics in the Tampa Bay area.
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