The PJ Tatler

LA Gas Prices Already Nearing $4 a Gallon

A few days ago, Bryan raised the specter of $5 a gallon gas, and it looks like it’s well on its way there in Southern California:

Just in time for Presidents Day: get ready for the long holiday weekend’s highest prices ever in Southern California as $4 gasoline is expected to arrive in Los Angeles, Long Beach, and probably Orange County, too.

That’s what energy analysts are predicting as the average price of a gallon of gasoline in the Los Angeles-Long Beach area reached $3.996 a gallon overnight, up nearly 2 cents since Thursday. That was also a jump of 15.9 cents a gallon since last week.

That’s according to the AAA Fuel Gauge Report, a daily record of credit card receipts compiled from more than 100,000 service stations around the U.S. by the Oil Price Information Service in New Jersey and by Wright Express.

Not far behind the L.A. area: San Diego is also on the brink at $3.992 a gallon, up 16.2 cents since last week, according to the report. Orange County was also on the cusp, rising 16.2 cents a gallon in the past week to an average of $3.989 a gallon.

According to this report, that’s a record high for San Diego county gas prices for the month of February:

The average price of a gallon of self-serve regular gasoline in San Diego County Friday recorded its largest daily increase since Feb. 25, 2011, rising 4.8 cents to $3.992, its highest amount since June 3.

The average price has risen 23 consecutive days and is 16.2 cents more than one week ago, 26.7 cents higher than one month ago and 49 cents greater than a year ago, according to figures from the AAA and Oil Price Information Service.

The average price has risen 25.5 cents over the past 23 days, including 3.4 cents on Thursday.

The average price of a gallon of regular gasoline on Thursday — $3.96 — was a record for any day in any February, the consumer group UCAN reported.

UCAN’s Charles Langley warned there probably won’t be any price relief at the pump in the near future for San Diego residents.

He said the price has jumped 7.6 cents per gallon since Monday and should top $4 per gallon by President’s Day.

Given that most people “vote their wallets” when choosing a president (remember Clinton’s “it’s the economy, stupid”), this could be a very bad sign for the Obama campaign, especially since the price of gas at his inauguration was below $2 a gallon.