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Gas prices jump 25 cents

Gas prices were $3.35 in Cedar Springs Wednesday.

Gas prices took a hike Tuesday, when they jumped to $3.39 in Cedar Springs and across the metro Grand Rapids area. That was a 25-cent jump that had people lined up at Admiral on Main and Muskegon, historically the last gas station in the area to raise its price. The price had shifted downward to $3.35 at press time Wednesday.

Tom Kloza, publisher and chief energy analyst for the Oil Price Information Service, said in a recent blog that if not for the Egyptian uprising, we would probably be looking at cheaper prices for gasoline and diesel this month.

He also explained that our gasoline inventory is at its highest since 1989, but that it’s winter gasoline. Pipelines and terminal operators will soon be purging the supply system from winter gasoline (which needs to be volatile because of cold temperatures) to spring/summer gasoline, which requires much lower vapor pressure.

“My best guess is that U.S. refinery runs will scrape bottom in late February or early March, and thereby incite a 2011 round of “petronoia” that will lift nationwide retail prices to $3.50-$3.75 gallon,” predicted Kloza.

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