St. Louis gas prices unusually higher than national average -

St. Louis gas prices unusually higher than national average

ST. LOUIS – Missouri drivers are paying more than the national average for gas as prices are up for the tenth day in a row.

Experts are shocked because Missouri prices are normally lower than the national average which currently sits at $3.80.  In midtown St. Louis, gas prices are $3.99 a gallon while many other St. Louis stations are selling gas for around $3.87.

The St. Louis area typically pays less with the help of a lower gas tax and the proximity to oil refineries along the Mississippi River.

A St. Louis University economics expert says it is hard to pinpoint why St. Louis is paying more, but believes consumers can blame 25 to 50 cents in the price on speculation that it will continue to rise through the summer.

“That is shocking to hear that we are higher than the national average because I would say that more than 80 percent of the days as you track this Missouri and St. Louis are 15 to 20 cents below the national average,” Jack Strauss said.  “In the past when that has happened it has been refinery problems in the New Orleans area, but in this case I am not sure.”

President Barack Obama asked Saudi Arabia officials to increase production on Monday and has also agreed to open the national reserves in an effort to lower the price of gas.

Strauss believes the high gas prices could lead to another recession.

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