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Area gas prices up 5 percent since January

By VELVET SPICER - 4/3/2013 3:09:06 PM

Rochester area gas prices have risen 18 cents a gallon since the beginning of the year, a weekly survey by GasBuddy shows.

Locally, gas prices increased 5 percent from $3.67 per gallon Jan. 7 to $3.85 per gallon this week. Nationally, gas averaged $3.61 per gallon this week, compared with $3.27 per gallon the first week of January.

Since the beginning of March, gas prices both locally and on a national level have dropped 9 cents per gallon.

“Gas prices in March came in like a lion and are going out like a lamb,” said Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst at GasBuddy. “For the first time in a decade gasoline prices are going to be lower at the end of March than the beginning.”

The last time gas prices dropped from the beginning of March to the end of March was 2003, DeHaan noted.

“Essentially what we’re seeing here this month is perhaps the largest monthly decrease ever during the month of March—a month that has almost always seen prices finishing the month substantially higher than where they entered,” he added.

GasBuddy operates more than 250 websites tracking gas prices at more than 140,000 stations nationwide, including RochesterGasPrices.com. In Rochester, GasBuddy tracks price changes at more than 300 retail outlets.

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