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Madison gas prices spike by nearly 10 cents in one week

The survey found a large 57 cent gap between the cheapest and most expensive fuel
Published: Oct. 11, 2021 at 8:26 AM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - The latest survey of gas prices in Madison saw prices soar by nearly a dime in the past week, leaving them more than a dollar higher than this time last year when the worst period of the pandemic in Wisconsin was just ramping up.

Experts blamed the increase primarily on the rise in crude oil prices, which have risen eight dollars in the past three weeks to close Friday at $78.30, their highest level in more than seven years, according to GasBuddy, which tracks gasoline prices across the country.

“The nation’s gas prices were also pushed to their highest since 2014, all on OPEC’s decision not to raise production more than it already agreed to in July,” GasBuddy head of petroleum analysis Patrick De Haan explained. Additionally, he pointed to a global energy crunch he attributed to rising oil prices and warned if drivers do not start conserving fuel, prices could climb even more.

According to GasBuddy, its survey of 210 stations in Madison showed prices sailed past the three-dollar mark to settle at $3.09/gallon, a 9.5 cent increase over a week ago. While the pandemic suppressed gas prices last year, a look back to 2019, prior to COVID-19, still finds them 60 cents higher now. De Haan notes that drivers are now spending over $400 million more at the pump each day than they were a year ago.

GasBuddy also found a wild swing in prices in the Wisconsin capital over the past seven days. The best price GasBuddy could find over that period was more than a quarter lower ($2.84/gal.) than the average. On the other hand, the survey notes one station was charging as much as $3.47/gallon.

Other cities were paying a little less than drivers in Madison. Those stopping at a gas station in Appleton were paying $3.02/gallon, on average, while people in Milwaukee needed to spend three cents more than that. However, filling up before heading south might be a good idea, crossing into Illinois and stopping in Rockford meant a $3.44/gallon hit to the pocketbook – an average that was higher than anywhere in Madison.

Nationwide, gasoline increased by about a nickel and sites at $3.25/gallon, which is also more than a dollar higher than last year.

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