EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

February 24, 2013

Gas prices continue upward spirall

Auto Scene
Jeffrey Zygmont

---- — The cost of driving rose again last week. Gasoline price tracking by the auto club AAA showed increases of more than 5 cents per gallon in both Massachusetts and New Hampshire through the seven-day span ending Thursday. The average price for self-service regular gas now stands above $3.75 per gallon in Massachusetts.

But drivers in other parts of the country fared worse last week. After a 15-cent increase through the seven-day period, the overall national average reached $3.778 on Thursday, AAA reported. That put the U.S. average higher than prices paid in Massachusetts and New Hampshire, reversing the trend that had prevailed through all of last year, when local averages ran higher than the national level.

Last week was the fourth straight week in which regional gas prices rose. It was the fifth straight week of increases in the U.S. national average.

In Massachusetts drivers paid an average of $3.776 for self-service regular on Thursday, up 5.9 cents from the prior Thursday’s $3.717, AAA reported. Thursday’s figure was 13.5 cents higher than the Bay State average of $3.641 compiled by the auto club on the same day of 2012.

The New Hampshire state-wide average rose 6.8 cents last week, reaching $3.739 on Thursday from $3.671 seven days earlier, according to AAA. On the same day last year, the Granite State average of $3.589 was 15.0 cents lower than Wednesday’s figure. .

The U.S. coast-to-coast average for self-service regular rose an even 15 cents last week. On Thursday, AAA put the national average at $3.778, compared to $3.628 seven days earlier. On the same day of 2012, the national average of $3.579 was 19.9 cents below Wednesday’s figure.