Gordon Could Impact Nation’s Rising Gas Prices

Sep 4, 2018

With Gordon expected to become a hurricane and headed to the U.S. Gulf Coast, analysts are keeping a close eye on the nation’s oil refineries.

The Gulf Coast has 45 percent of the nation’s refinery capacity, according to the American Automobile Association (AAA).

Last year when Hurricane Harvey made landfall in Texas as a category four storm, energy production dropped approximately 21 percent with gasoline futures jumping 47 percent at the time.

Prices at the pump climbed as much as 50 cents within 15 days of Harvey’s arrival in some parts of the country.

"Market watchers will pay close attention to how refineries respond to this storm. Any supply outages would likely cause prices to climb," said AAA spokesman Mark Jenkins.

Over the holiday weekend, motorists faced the most expensive Labor Day gas prices in four years, according to AAA.

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In Florida, the average price for a gallon of unleaded gasoline is up to $2.80, which is seven cents more than last week and 17 cents higher than this time last year.  The national average was $2.83 Tuesday morning.

As of Tuesday morning the average price for a gallon of unleaded regular in Jacksonville was $2.75, according to AAA.

Prices as of 11 a.m. Tuesday.
Credit AAA

While prices have been rising the U.S., they are still a long way from the highest price on record. That was $4.11 in July 2008, according to AAA.

"It's too early to know just how much of an impact - if any - Gordon will have on prices at the pump," said Jenkins.    

National gas prices as of 11 a.m. Tuesday.
Credit AAA

Bill Bortzfield can be reached at bbortzfield@wjct.org, 904-358-6349 or on Twitter at @BortzInJax.