Rising Gas Prices | VideoAlex Hagan | 2/9/2013
It`s something drivers all over the country don`t want to see when they`re fuel tank is on empty, but it`s happening. Gas prices are on the way up.
Mike Fazekas is a travelling salesman. He gets a fuel allowance, but sometimes that`s just not enough. "When fuel prices go up, it exceeds my allowance then I have to pay out of my pocket for the difference," Fazekas said.
Prices in Bismarck have gone up to around $3.50 a gallon the past month. Investment analysts say some refineries are shutting down temporarily and problems in the Middle East contributed to the jump in prices.
"A rise is not out of the norm. The extent of the rise is what we watch for to see if that`s out of the norm," said Eugene Graner from Heartland Investor Services.
Expensive gasoline often fuels better sales for economy cars.
"When gas prices go up, it directly correlates to hybrid sales," said Daniel Lee from Cedric Theel Toyota.
Buying a hybrid car can save you money on gas in the long run, but car dealership employees say it all depends on how much driving you actually do. Lee says Hybrids are more expensive, but if you drive a lot of miles you can come out ahead.
"When gas is up to whatever it might be, four or five bucks a gallon. People want to save that money driving to and from work. If it`s a lot of highway driving and 50 miles per gallon, you get a lot of driving on a tank of gas," said Lee.
Fazekas says if prices continue to rise and stay high, some drivers might switch rides. "If the benefits outweigh the cost, I would probably consider it."
With many workers making long commutes in North Dakota, an economy car may be a good option.
Graner says he doesn`t expect gas prices to rise close to four dollars a gallon, but it`s not out of the question if problems in the Middle East continue.