Gas prices near $3 a gallon

By Ben Rooney, staff reporter

NEW YORK ( -- Gas prices continued to climb higher, rising for a fifth consecutive day and coming closer to $3 a gallon.

The average cost of a gallon of regular gasoline rose slightly on Sunday to $2.747, from $2.743 the day before, according to motorist group AAA. Nationwide, gas prices have increased eight cents over the last five days.

Prices were highest in the state of Alaska, at $3.373 a gallon, AAA reported. They were cheapest in Wyoming, at an average $2.494 a gallon.

The national average gas price is now higher than it was at any point in 2009. But prices are still down $1.45, or 35%, from the record high price of $4.114 that AAA reported on July 17, 2008.

Gas prices have been rising recently as the price of crude oil has pushed higher. Last week, oil averaged about $82.30 a barrel, barely below a 14-month high.

Oil prices have been supported by frigid temperatures across much of North America and Europe, which has increased demand for heating fuels. Some analysts say pump prices could top $3 a gallon in the weeks ahead if crude prices rise near $90 a barrel.  To top of page

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