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Gas prices up over Christmas weekend

If you bought gas over the holiday weekend, you probably noticed the price was up.

Average retail gasoline prices in Tacoma rose 4.4 cents per gallon in the past week, according to gasoline price website GasBuddy.com. The average price Monday in Tacoma was $2.49 a gallon, with Costco in Tacoma and several Arco stations in the city ranking as the low-price leaders at $2.19 a gallon, according to tacomagasprices.com.

In Olympia, the Arco station at Martin Way East near Nisqually Cutoff Road Southeast had the cheapest gas at $2.17 a gallon. The state average was $2.46 a gallon, according to washingtongasprices.com.

Prices still are 9.2 cents per gallon lower than a year ago, but are 4.9 cents per gallon higher than a month ago.

“As the majority of the United States is still experiencing falling retail gas prices, California and the Great Lakes states are buoying the national average, keeping it from dropping further below $2 per gallon,” said Will Speer, a Houston-based senior petroleum analyst with GasBuddy. “After a healthy 5.9 million barrel draw in domestic crude stocks, crude futures markets responded with gains in the price of West Texas Intermediate crude.

“Despite this bullish pressure, 38 of the 50 states saw a weekly decline in gas prices. However, this majority of states lowering gas prices wasn’t enough to move the national average significantly, a testament to the severity of California’s gas price hike,” Speer said. “As the refining issues impacting California aren’t expected to be resolved this week, California will continue to inflate the national gas price average into the new year.”

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