The average price of a gallon of self-serve regular gasoline in Riverside County rose Tuesday for the 14th time in 15 days, increasing three-tenths of a cent to $4.497, its highest amount since Oct. 20, 2012.

The average price has risen 9.3 cents over the past 15 days, including a half-cent Monday, according to figures from the AAA and Oil Price Information Service. It rose 10 consecutive days, was unchanged Friday and resumed increasing Saturday.

The average price is 2.8 cents more than one week ago, 17.4 cents higher than one month ago and $1.381 greater than one year ago.

The 2012 figure included stations in San Bernardino County.

“The jump in gas prices that started nearly a month ago is finally running out of steam for the time being, as oil prices have stabilized,” said Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy, which provides real-time gas price information from more than 150,000 stations. “For most motorists, gas prices are likely to greatly slow their recent ascent and we could even see some small declines in the week ahead.

“OPEC is planning to meet next week, and while it doesn’t seem likely there will be any boost in oil output, its meeting and comments could easily drive the market up or down. The odds remain high that gas prices will remain near Tuesday’s elevated levels going into the holidays, barring additional OPEC supply.”

The high gas prices are the result of the sharp increase to crude oil prices over the past year because of stronger demand following the elimination of coronavirus-related restrictions.

The price of a barrel of West Texas intermediate crude on the New York Mercantile Exchange has increased 125.93% from its 52-week low of $37.14 on Nov. 6, 2020, to $83.91 Tuesday because of higher demand following the elimination of coronavirus-related restrictions.

Tuesday’s settlement value is the third-highest of the year, behind only last Tuesday, when it was $84.65, and Monday, when it was $84.05.

Crude oil costs account for slightly more than half of the pump price, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

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