You may have noticed that over the past few months, even since November of last year, that the amount of money you're spending to put fuel in your vehicle has risen. It hasn't been a sharp spike but still, the increase in gas prices has been slow and steady since about Thanksgiving of last year.

According to data from the Lundberg Survey crude oil prices have been steadily rising and that has meant you and I have been paying a little more at the pump. If you throw in the recent spate of severe winter weather much of the nation has seen you've got a scenario for higher fuel prices from sea to shining sea.

The Lundberg Survey reported that gas prices around the country have risen almost half of a dollar a gallon since November of last year. The actual figure is .46 cents but that's pretty close to half a buck per gallon more. The national average for a gallon of fuel has jumped by .14 cents over the last two weeks. The current average price for regular gas is $2.46 for a gallon.

In Louisiana, gas prices jumped about three cents over the course of last week mainly because of the winter weather. The average price for a gallon of regular gas in Louisiana, according to Triple-A, the American Automobile Association, is $2.28 a gallon. That's still .18 cents less than the national average.

In Acadiana, we've found gas prices significantly lower than the $2.28 per gallon figure. For example, there is a station in Breaux Bridge that is selling fuel for $2.05 a gallon and Costco and Sam's Club are offering fuel for $2.14 a gallon in Lafayette. Even though those prices are lower than the statewide and nationwide averages they are significantly higher than what we've been paying over the past few months.

Hopefully, an increase in crude prices will mean an increase in oilfield activity and that will mean more Louisiana workers returning to their jobs. That is assuming that the oil and gas industry is not outlawed by some misguided edict from Washington over the next few years.

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