by Christopher Freeburn | January 31, 2013 12:23 pm
Gas prices are rising again, but drivers in California are likely to see the sharpest rise.
Since last month, the average national price of a gallon of gasoline has risen 13 cents, hitting $3.42. However, in California, drivers are paying a statewide average of $3.76 a gallon, and wholesale has prices are surging, USA TODAY notes.
Experts predict that gas prices in Southern California will hit $4 a gallon soon. Prices in Northern California, Washington and Oregon will also soar as refineries switch over to more expensive summer gas blends.
On the world market, crude oil prices have been steadily rising for the past two months. Last year, problems at several West Coast refineries caused California gas prices to skyrocket. Fuel costs in the state typically surge during the first three months of the year.
Despite news of rising gas prices, shares of Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM), Phillips 66 (NYSE:PSX) and ConoccoPhilips (NYSE:COP) fell in Thursday midday trading, while shares of Valero (NYSE:VLO) edged up fractionally.
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