Gasoline prices spike on Ike's approach

HOUSTON (AP) -- The wholesale price for gasoline produced on the Gulf Coast has jumped about 30 percent as Hurricane Ike churns toward Texas and its massive petroleum refining infrastructure.

The wholesale price for a gallon of gasoline rose about $1 to $4.25 Thursday, topping the high price five years ago when hurricanes Katrina and Rita raked the Gulf Coast, said Tom Kloza, publisher of the Oil Price Information Service in Wall, N.J.

"It's pure panic," Kloza said. "It's related to the fact that there are worries about whether there's going to be enough (gasoline) in the distribution system to satisfy some of the September pumping needs on the Gulf Coast."

The spike will almost certainly lead to high pump prices for consumers.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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