Fueling Gas Price Hikes

Al Tagliaferri now drops more than $100 a week at the pump, just to get to and from work.

"(It) keeps going up every day it seems," the Stamford, Conn. resident remarks to CBS News correspondent Trish Regan, on The Early Show.

And so, like most Americans, he keeps driving -- and paying -- as gas prices move higher.

Fellow Stamford resident Holly Hall has a sense of what's down the road for her: "I think they're very high, and I hear they're worse in California, where I'm about to go."

California's home to some of the highest prices in the country, averaging more than $2.30 a gallon, up 18 cents from this time last year.

Prices have spiked even more dramatically in places such as Cleveland, where they average $2.09, up nearly 50 cents from a year ago.

In Denver, the cost per gallon hit $2.05, a year-over-year increase of 36 cents.

And in Miami, it's $2.12, a 33 cent jump.

John Kingston of the Platts industry newsletter says, "This is not like 1979 or '73, '74, when it was a supply constraint that sent prices up. You've got very good demand in the U.S., and you continue to have terriffic demand in other parts of the world."

The world's appetite for oil is seemingly insatiable, Regan observes. No matter how much is produced, there is still demand for more. The only problem is, OPEC has little room to increase production, and as a result, prices keep rising.

And pocketbooks are getting pinched.

"I got 12 gallons (for $26.20)," Tagliaferri laments. "Good to tomorrow."

For now, Regan says, Americans can only watch and wonder how high gas prices can climb.

Also on The Early Show Wednesday, viewers get fuel-saving tips from AAA's Robert Sinclair, and David Champion of Consumer Reports gives viewers a peek at the cars the magazine finds are best at being gas misers, and some new technologies to help vehicles' fuel efficiency.
  • Brian Dakss

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