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Gas prices reach new high for year

Published: June 17, 2016 10:00 AM

The national average price of gasoline reached a new 2016 high over the weekend, and an average of $2.38 per gallon is the most expensive average since September 2015.

Although pump prices have increased for 28 of the past 33 days, consumers continue to benefit from yearly savings and prices are down 42 cents per gallon compared to a year ago.

The cost of crude oil has moved higher over the past few weeks, which has made gasoline more expensive to start the summer driving season.

Crude oil prices have increased due to unexpected disruptions in places like Canada and Nigeria, while questions continue to mount over future production in Venezuela.

Since early April, the cost of crude oil has increased by more than $13 per barrel to the highest levels since 2015. Prices may continue to fluctuate on the heels of news related to global oil supply and the U.S. dollar, which could have a major impact on what drivers pay for gasoline this summer.

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After reaching new 2016 highs, crude oil prices retreated to close out the week due to news of a strengthening U.S. dollar and data showing an uptick in the number of U.S. drilling rigs in operation. Both benchmarks opened the week by extending this trend of sliding prices, as concerns of revived production out of the U.S. and global demand concerns begin to resurface.

At the close of Friday's formal trading session on the NYMEX, West Texas Intermediate closed down $1.49 and settled at $49.07 per barrel.

Local gasoline prices include $2.771 in Alliance and $2.679 in Massillon.

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