Gas prices level off over week
Gas prices in Regina are levelling out after a week that saw people paying more than anywhere else on the Prairies.
Last week people at the pumps here saw higher prices — 102.9 cents per litre — than any other major city in the Prairies, according to MJ Ervin Associates of Calgary’s weekly pump price survey.
The same survey, released every Tuesday by MJ Ervin & Associates, shows prices are levelling off at 96.6 cents per litre this week.
“What looks like happened this week is it kind of settled down a little bit,” said Jason Parent, vice president of MJ Ervin & Associate.
Parent cited a number of refineries coming off-line — because of weather, an explosion and strikes — as explanation for last week’s high prices.
Jason Toews, co-founder of Gasbuddy.com, said gas prices in Regina increased higher than they should have.
“They (raised) it up higher than they needed to,” he said. “They don’t like to raise prices too frequently.”
However, Parent doesn’t believe any retail gamesmanship was being played during last week’s increase.
“There’s enough competition and diversity among the people setting the prices at the retail level that there’s not really a whole lot of room for gamesmanship like that,” he said.
Both industry experts predict prices to go up again.
Parent said there is a seasonal change coming and many refineries plan to go off-line this time of year.
As the weather gets warmer, the demand for gas increases as more people start to travel.
“That’s just normal seasonal behaviour,” said Parent.
While prices are higher than many were getting used to, Toews said there are still ways of gassing up on the cheap.
“There are deals out there, so I would definitely caution people to shop around,” he said, noting discounts are available for as much as 10 cents a litre less than the 95.9 cents per litre average.