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Gas Prices Spike Across Parts of Minnesota

Gas prices have spiked in parts of Minnesota over the past day, and are now back over $4 a gallon at some stations.

At a station in West St. Paul, the price of regular unleaded gas jumped from $3.79 a gallon early Friday morning to $4.09 in the early afternoon.

In Duluth, KBJR-TV reported prices jumped more than 40 cents a gallon at some stations on Thursday, also to $4.09 a gallon.

The price-tracking website GasBuddy reported a refinery outage may be driving the increase, and that prices could climb even higher.

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“A refinery that goes down has contractual obligations to supply certain volumes of gasoline to stations. If an unexpected outage happens, the refinery that goes down suddenly may not have enough supply to meet its obligations and has to find another refinery to buy from,” reported Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy. “This can push prices up considerably, as a refinery could be a very large buyer.”

GasBuddy didn’t have further details on the location or nature of those possible refinery issues. It said a jump in prices was also expected in other states across the central U.S., including North and South Dakota.

But the website said the price hikes may be short-lived, because stations can start switching to cheaper, winter-blend gas at the end of next week.

De Haan called it a “very large, but temporary squeeze in the market.”

According to AAA, gas prices in Minnesota averaged $3.63 a gallon a week ago, $3.81 a month ago and $3.68 a year ago.

AAA said the record high average gas price in Minnesota is nearly $4.76 a gallon, in June 2022.\

Source : MPR News