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‘Avoid filling up’: Gas prices spike in Metro Vancouver

Gas prices soared overnight as one expert linked the increase to a drone attack on two Saudi Arabian oil processing facilities.
Gas prices soared overnight as one expert linked the increase to a drone attack on two Saudi Arabian oil processing facilities. Nadia Stewart / Global News

If your gas tank is running on empty, maybe just throw a few bucks in and ride it out until Thursday.

That’s the advice from petroleum analyst Dan McTeague after gas prices spiked across the region overnight.

“I guess, really, the message here today is avoid going to a gas station and certainly avoid filling up,” McTeague said on Wednesday.

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Prices around the region had been hovering in the range of $1.40 on Tuesday, but McTeague said the effects of a market shock linked to a drone attack on a pair of Saudi Arabian oil facilities over the weekend may have caused the sudden increase.

“Markets got back on Monday and decided: ‘Wow, this is a really bad situation, could get worse,'” McTeague said. “The president of the United States talked about ‘locked and loaded’ and that really sent oil prices on a tear.

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“Enough for about an $8 increase on West Texas Intermediate, the [oil] benchmark we use here. That was good enough for about a seven-cent increase overnight.”

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Prices at some gas stations around Vancouver were as high as $1.589 on Wednesday morning.

However, other gas stations were still selling in the $1.40 range, meaning as much as an 18-cent spread depending on where motorists decide to fill up.

McTeague said despite the spike, prices were expected to moderate quickly based on comments by the Saudis.

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“The good news is Saudi Arabia says: ‘Nothing to see here. Everything is fine, we’re back to normal production, and it’s likely that this thing will be over within the next couple of weeks, perhaps as late as a couple of months,’ so markets reversed,” he said.

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“That means tomorrow in Vancouver, you’re going to see a net decrease of six cents a litre.”