GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Gas prices jumped around 30 cents in West Michigan this week, with some areas seeing a 50 cent increase.
According to GasBuddy.com, the average price for a gallon of regular unleaded gas on Thursday evening was $2.909 in Michigan and $2.934 in Grand Rapids — higher than the national average of $2.793 and rising.
The spike was a bit of a surprise, with analysts having previously said that this summer’s gas prices would be the cheapest in five years.
Patrick DeHaan, GasBuddy.com’s senior petroleum analyst, told 24 Hour News 8 that refinery problems that have persisted for about a month combined with a big gain in the price of oil on Wednesday caused the increase.
“It led us to the disgusting state of gas prices today,” he said in a phone interview.
But he said it’s still unlikely for gas prices to stay above $3 per gallon for an extended period of time this summer.
The per-barrel price of crude oil on Thursday was $59.92.
DeHaan called the current price of oil “completely overvalued considering the situation with supply and demand.” He said it was a “head scratcher” because there is still a high inventory of oil and Saudi Arabia said it is prepared to produce more.
Hear the interview with DeHaan above.
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