Maryland gas prices jump due to conflict in Iraq

Flaring tension in Iraq is likely to cause a jump in gas prices, according to a report from AAA.

Gas prices have already increased 3 cents after nine days of decline, a AAA spokesman said, citing a report from Energy Information Administration.

Market analysts attribute the civil war in Iraq to an increase of 8 cents a gallon compared to the same time last year. Gas prices in June typically decline. 

The national average price of gas reached $3.68 Friday, a 3-cent increase compared to last week.

From AAA:

Friday's average is four cents higher than one month ago and eight cents higher than year ago prices.  After falling for nine straight days, the national average has increased for nine consecutive days for a total of about three cents per gallon as violence in Iraq has intensified.  Gas prices often decline in June with the national average falling the previous three years at an average of approximately 20 cents per gallon. The recent turmoil in Iraq is likely to prevent that trend from repeating this year.

As for the weekend, “"Despite expectations for a less expensive summer, it looks like Americans are stuck paying above-average gas prices," said Ragina Cooper-Averella, Public and Government Affairs Manager for AAA Mid-Atlantic. 

"If the instability in Iraq continues, crude oil prices will likely continue rising and Americans can expect to continue paying more at the pump, given that more than two-thirds of a gallon of gasoline is made up of crude oil,” Cooper-Averella continued in the release. “Currently, the nationwide average is on track to surpass the spring peak ($3.70 on April 28).”

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