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Gas Prices Jump On Fears of Spreading Revolution

By Jeffrey Hess | Published 24 Feb 2011 12:25pm | comments
A price sign in down town Jackson.

Unrest across the Middle East has pushed oil prices over 100-dollars a barrel, which leads to higher gas prices. Mississippi drivers are watching the price of gas rise and are asking 'how high can it go?'. MPB's Jeffrey Hess reports that some are preparing for gasoline that costs more than 5-dollars a gallon.

Revolutions across North Africa have put jitters into oil traders, says PFGBest oil analyst Phil Flynn. He says those concerns have driven the cost of a barrel of oil up 13-percent in a month.

"This really transcends normal supply and demand. This really gets to the heart and soul of the global oil market. We are seeing a major threat to OPEC. Saudi Arabia, the world's largest producer, could get involved in this uprising. And if that happens, there is not going to be enough oil to go around," Flynn said.

Flynn says 5-dollar a gallon gasoline is not out of the question if the revolutions continue or spread across the region.

Nathan Pain is a college student who scraped together a few bucks to buy some gas to get him to the end of the month.

He paid $3.23 a gallon at a small Jackson gas station but was not at all surprised by the price.

"What's going on in the Middle East right now with Gadahfi and the whole Tunisian and Egypt, all that. It is really not that surprising to me. I heard from some other people and they were saying that oil is going to be about 200-dollars a barrel before all this happened. So it is just going to sky rocket," Pain said.

Prices have risen dramatically in recently. This station in downtown Jackson has increased prices by 25-cents over the last couple weeks.

Station Assistant Manager Eric Clowers says they have received word from B-P, their corporate supplier, to add another ten cents by the end of the day.

"I am surprised for the mere fact that I never suspected to see gas prices at this rate. I am not surprised because I know it is more reaction based upon those other things that are happening overseas. With the revolution and, you know, the other people voicing their opinions," Clowers said.

Oil analysts Phil Flynn also says there could be benefits to the current unrest in the long run. He thinks a stable democratic middle east could produce more oil, for cheaper, and break the oil cartel OPEC.

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A price sign in down town Jackson.


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