Surge in Kansas City-area gas prices moving faster than national average

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Gas prices, which plunged downward at the end of 2012, have spiked again both nationally and in the Kansas City area.

The national average for a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline is $3.423, according to the AAA Daily Fuel Gauge Report. That's up 2.9 cents since yesterday and 13.1 cents over the last month.

While prices in Missouri and Kansas remain well below the national average, prices in both states have gone up much higher than they have at the national level.

In Missouri, where prices on Thursday (3.235) were the 10th-cheapest in the nation, the price has gone up 21.2 cents in just the last month.

The cost of a gallon of gas in Kansas, which stood at $3.301 on Thursday, has risen 21.5 cents in the last month. In Lenexa early Thursday, 41 Action News saw gas as high as $3.469.

Locally, the price jumps are even higher, on both sides of the state line.

Prices in Kansas City, Kan. ($3.305), have gone up 24.1 cents. In Kansas City, Mo. ($3.244), the jump in the last month was 26 cents.

The cheapest average price in the United States on Thursday was in Montana, where a gallon was $3.006. The most expensive in the continental U.S. was in California, where the average price was $3.764. In Hawaii, drivers are paying an average of $4.111.

While the surge in prices has been quick and way-too noticeable, the national consulting firm Oil Price Information Services predicts we're more likely to see average prices drop back down closer to $3 a gallon than continue their upward trend to $4.

You can find an updated map of Kansas City gas prices, plus a list of the 10 cheapest local gas stations at .

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