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Volatile prices at the gas pumps

Published: Monday, Nov. 4, 2013 1:15 a.m. CDT
Caption
(AP)
A Swifty gas station in Kokomo, Ind., advertises a discount. Gas sold for $3.17 Thursday in Kokomo. Gasoline prices are swinging up and down ever more drastically, a result of a national fuel system that is operating with a shrinking margin for error.

NEW YORK (AP) – Local gasoline prices are swinging up and down ever more drastically, a result of a national fuel system that is operating with a shrinking margin for error.

Jumps of 20 cents per gallon or more in a single day are becoming more common, for example, according to an AP analysis of daily and weekly price changes at 120,000 U.S. gasoline stations tracked by GasBuddy.com. Sixty-three times this year at least one U.S. metro area has seen such a change. Like the 24-cent increase Decatur, Ill. drivers saw on Jan. 26, or the 24-cent increase in Superior, Wis. on April 30, and the 28-cent increase in Henderson, Ky. on Sept. 19.

Not since 2008 have there been so many 20-cent changes. Last year those happened 58 times. In 2011 they happened just 21 times, and in 2010 just 7 times.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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