After falling 0.7 cents last week on the heels of a five-week gain, diesel climbed back up this week, 78.7 cents higher than the same week last year.
The West Coast and Central Atlantic regions had the highest prices this week, at $3.113 and $3.136 a gallon, respectively. The Gulf Coast and Lower Atlantic regions saw the lowest averages, at $2.978 and $2.986 a gallon, respectively.
On the heels of crude oil hitting an 18-month high Thursday as it passed $85 a barrel, analysts predicted higher fuel prices to come, according to reports by the Associated Press. Meanwhile, new economic reports, including positive home sales and service sector results, pointed to a favorable economic outlook. The Department of Labor announced that total employment was up 162,000 in March. Demand for crude oil is expected to follow, says the AP.
On top of the effects of the holiday weekend, these factors contributed to a boost in oil Monday, which landed at $86.62 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the AP reports.
Gasoline prices were up 2.8 cents to a national average of $2.826 as motorists hit the roads over the weekend. This is 78.9 cents above the same week last year.