‘Warm weather’ may be behind sudden spike in gas prices, analyst says
Gas prices in the United States are expected to climb again this weekend after a cooling trend began in February.
Gasoline prices in Chicago and New York are forecast to climb by as much as 15 cents to $3.99 a gallon, according to GasBuddy.
Prices in Houston, Los Angeles, and San Diego are expected by as little as 6 cents to 10 cents a gallon.
Prices will also be up more in Los Angeles and San Francisco, but not nearly as much.
A number of factors could be behind the rise in gas costs.
The cold snap may be making gasoline more expensive, but the weather may be contributing as well, said Mark Siegel, a gas analyst at Siegel & Lipscomb.
He noted that colder temperatures in the U.S. are not unusual and could be due to the effect of El Niño.
“The cold weather is definitely not a coincidence,” he said.
“We are not expecting a large drop in the temperature that we saw in the summer.
There’s nothing unusual about that.”
The cold weather, combined with the cold weather in California, is not going to lead to the same increase in gas price as we saw last winter, said Siegel.
The lack of demand for gas may be driving prices up even more.
Siegel said it will likely take until June for prices to rebound.