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Gas prices on the rise again, to statewide average of $4.17

By Star-Advertiser staff and Associated Press

LAST UPDATED: 6:16 p.m. HST, Aug 16, 2012

Prices at the gas pump are rising again after 11 weeks of declines, according to the AAA Hawaii Weekend Gas Watch.

The statewide average of $4.17 per gallon for regular gasoline is 3 cents more than last weekend, but 2 cents lower than last month. Gas prices are about 7 cents more than last year.

Hilo saw the biggest increase since last week, up eight cents to $4.20. Wailuku’s average rose 2 cents to $4.18 and Honolulu is up 3 cents at $4.12.

Honolulu’s price is 2 cents less than last month and 8 cents higher than last year at this time.

In Hilo, the average gas price is a penny more than last month and 8 cents more than this time last year.  Wailuku’s average is 12 cents less than last month and 19 cents lower than last year.

“Prices rose rather distinctly through the islands last week, tracking the increasing price of oil,” said AAA Hawaii Regional Manager Diane Peterson.

 Nationally, the average price for a gallon of regular gasoline is at $3.71, the highest level since mid-May. That’s up 30 cents from a month ago and 12 cents more than this time last year.

Wholesale oil prices have been rising.

Benchmark oil for September delivery rose 96 cents to $95.29 per barrel in afternoon trading in New York Thursday. It’s now up 2.6 percent from $92.87 per barrel on Friday.

On Wednesday, oil rose 90 cents per barrel on an unexpectedly large drop in crude supplies. That’s another sign of stronger demand, which tends to drive up prices.

Increasing tensions between Israel and Iran have also been driving oil prices higher in recent weeks.

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