Gas Prices Creep a Bit Higher
Despite a slight increase in gasoline prices, some Moore County motorists are still happily pumping away.
On Tuesday, gasoline prices in Moore County ranged from $1.68 to $1.87, with an average of about $1.75, according to MSN's gas prices Web site. That is up from a low of about $1.59 in recent weeks.
While prices were varied all over the county, they were generally lower to the north. The state average is about $1.72, according to various Web sites.
"It looks better," said Robert Myers, who was filling up his truck at the Pure station on Morganton Road. "This increase we can handle compared to the last one."
Myers drives a Dodge Ram 1500 pickup, which cost about $32 to fill up this time around. He said he was paying as much as $75 this summer, when gas prices were more than $4 a gallon.
Erica Yancey, who commutes to Southern Pines from Fayetteville, agreed that things are better than they were several months ago. Regardless, she said that she is still conscious about how much she drives. She said she has cut down on long trips to visit out-of-town family members and doesn't "splurge" any-more.
"I just don't spend money like I used to," she said. "You just make some changes."
Ted Ray, of Southern Pines, said he wondered why prices suddenly went up.
"There was a 20-cent increase in two days," he said. "It just doesn't seem right."
Ray said he can't make himself put more than $25 in his Toyota Highlander.
"Everybody works hard for their money," he said. "You just have to be conservative."
Tom Crosby, vice president of communications for AAA of the Carolinas, said there has been a lot of price variability across the state the past couple of weeks.
"We've seen some ups and downs in price for the last two weeks," he said.
Crosby expects prices to keep fluctuating over the next few weeks but said there most likely wouldn't be any drastic changes. He said prices should continue to hold in the same ballpark, moving 5 to 10 cents in either direction.
"We'll continue to see a little of that for the next few weeks," he said. "I expect them to stay at a reasonable level for now."
Unlike late this summer, when gas prices in North Carolina were above the national average because of hurricane damage to Gulf Coast refineries, Crosby said there wasn't one factor that was causing prices to fluctuate. The situation in Gaza is causing uncertainty, he said, but inventories remain strong.
"Right now, there's no main reason for the wiggling here and there," he said.
While Moore County is above the statewide average, it is still under the national average, which stood at $1.77 Monday. The lowest price in the country was $1.14 in Wheatland, Wyo., while the highest was $3.44 in Cantwell, Alaska.
All in all, Crosby said he doesn't anticipate any major changes in the next several weeks. While the immediate outlook is more predictable, he said it is difficult to foresee what will happen down the road.
"It's such a global market now," he said. "There are all sorts of things out there. You just don't know because it's so dynamic."
Contact John Krahnert III at 693-2473 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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