Gas prices on the rise in the Tri-States - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Gas prices on the rise in the Tri-States

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QUINCY, Ill. (WGEM) -

AAA says gas prices have reached an all-time high for the month of February.  

On Monday, a gallon of unleaded regular was almost $3.60 a gallon in Quincy as prices have jumped about 20 cents in a week nationally. 

The U.S. Energy Department said that's the largest one week increase in almost two years, and local drivers say if it gets any higher, it's going to change their lifestyle.

AAA said drivers in Illinois are paying top dollar for gas prices because crude oil is up $6 a barrel and two Chicago-area refineries have been shut down for maintenance. 

Culver Stockton Associate Finance Professor Kim Gaither said there are also other issues that could contribute to the rise.

"Earlier and earlier, they start to see that trend of prices going up as we approach Spring and summer," she said.

Michael Gay said he's spending an extra $50 a month on gas and he thinks it could get much worse.

"I'm afraid that it might hit $4.20's by the time summer time comes because you go through the past records and you see how it inflates and you put them all together and look at them this year, it's probably going to be higher," he said.  

If it rises, Gay said he's going to have to cut back on other activities.

"It's starting to make the fun things I want to do smaller and smaller especially with the kids and everything like that," he said.  

But the question everyone is asking; when will prices stop going up?

"The local market over reacts or overprices a little bit and then it tends to settle down. Whether it will or not, I don't have a crystal ball but that would be the history of it," said Gaither. 

The statewide average for Illinois is actually 10 cents higher than the prices in Quincy. As for Missouri, the average is about 30 cents less at $3.32. In Iowa, the average is $3.47 a gallon.

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