Missouri drivers, prepare for pain at the pump as you watch the price of gas jump in the next few days. The jump is expected to be anywhere from 50 cents to a whole dollar. This is quite a steep jump compared to the usual increase of 5-10 cents. This jump is predicted and reported by the popular website GasBuddy, which tends to report fairly accurately.
Going into Labor Day weekend, gas prices had already increased quite steeply. In the days and weeks leading up to the holiday, Saudi Arabia went through production cuts and there was low inventory in the U.S. There also had been maintenance in several refineries, which all ultimately led to higher prices.
After the Labor Day price hike, and ahead of the anticipated one, Missouri gas prices are still lower than the national average.
Missouri’s average price of gas per gallon is $3.52. The national average is around $3.81. If GasBuddy proves to be correct in its prediction, the price will surpass the national average. In major cities in the state, the price of a gallon of gas is a little higher than the state’s average, but even in those cities, the price is currently lower than the national average.
Does GasBuddy have a reported explanation for the steep price increase?
GasBuddy has not released conclusive information formally pointing to the cause of the price increase, but they do have some particular theories. Reports say that GasBuddy was told by trade sources that there is a refinery outage presently and that is affecting the price at the pump.
The head of GasBuddy’s petroleum analysis department, Patrick De Haan, explained that there are certain requirements a refinery has to follow when it goes down. One of these includes supplying a certain amount of gasoline to stations. However, if a refinery has issues unexpectedly and has to have an emergency shutdown, there is no guarantee that they have the required stock that they must provide. Contractually, they still have to provide that amount of gasoline, so they may have to turn to buy gas from another refinery, and this, in turn, raises the price of gas at the pump.
We are also currently in a state of somewhat being between gas types. It is nearing the time to switch gas at the pumps to the winter-blend and as refineries prepare to make this switch, prices typically increase.