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Oil Analyst Blames Iran For High Gas Prices

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Price at the pump at a gas station - Stamford, CT - Jan 6, 2012 (credit: Paul Murnane / WCBS 880)

Price at the pump at a gas station – Stamford, CT – Jan 6, 2012 (credit: Paul Murnane / WCBS 880)

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STAMFORD, CT (WCBS 880) - High gas prices are no surprise in the summer, but they’ve gone up this winter.

WCBS 880’s Paul Murnane On The Story

On his Speaking of Oil blog, oil analyst Tom Kloza blames the situation with Iran, the demise of an ethanol tax break, and refinery maintenance work for the recent price spike.

But colder weather to come and consumer concerns about the economy could bring a big drop in demand in 2012.

The owner of a Tarrytown gas station said the price of regular went up three cents on Friday and is worried about what may come in spring and summer.

“I mean that’s like four or five months from now and it’s hard to predict,” said Jewels, who has also had days where he saw prices drop.

WCBS 880 Connecticut Bureau Chief Fran Schneidau On The Story

Connecticut oil analyst Peter Peutel also sees Iran’s threat to block oil transport as a factor in the rise of gas prices.

“It does represent a new level of hostile talk by Iran, and that’s what has everybody kind of jumping in here and to buy and cover short positions, and that’s pushing prices higher,” Beutel told WCBS 880 Connecticut Bureau Chief Fran Schneidau on Friday.

Beutel also cites the recent bull stock market as a factor. He says the assumption is that a higher market signals economic recovery and the expectation is, increased economic activity will bring more demand for oil and gasoline.

He sees no immediate relief in sight for these high gas prices.

On Thursday, Sen. Leonard Suzio announced he’s planning on introducing a bill next month which would cap one of the states two taxes on gasoline sales.

In Connecticut, on top of the fixed 25 cent a gallon state tax is a floating tax that rises and falls with the price of gas.

Suzio has drafted legislation to cap this floating gas tax whenever the price of gas hits $3 a gallon.

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