Video: Pain at the pump

updated 9/27/2004 11:36:26 AM ET 2004-09-27T15:36:26

Gas prices jumped more than 5 cents a gallon in the past two weeks, largely because of supply problems related to Hurricane Ivan, an industry analyst said Sunday.

For Sept. 10 through Friday, the combined national average for all grades of gas hit $1.94 a gallon, up about 5 cents from the previous two weeks.

“Most of this is hurricane-related,” said Trilby Lundberg, who publishes the semimonthly Lundberg Survey. “There was damage in the Gulf of Mexico to petroleum facilities, but there were also shutdowns in fear of damage. There were also delays of shipments of oil and refined products.”

The survey polls about 6,000 gas stations across the United States.

The average national price for self-serve regular, the biggest seller, reached $1.91. The mid-grade average was $2.01, and premium was pegged at $2.10.

Hurricane Ivan shut down oil refineries in the Gulf Coast and kept tankers from ports. The government said Friday it would lend 1.7 million barrels of oil from the nation’s Strategic Petroleum Reserve to two companies, as their refineries were running short of crude because of the hurricane.

Lundberg said she expects prices to stabilize shortly, or even slip.

The increases reversed a downward trend. Pump prices had been sliding since reaching a peak of $2.10 for the national average of all grades on May 21.

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