NewsLocal NewsInvestigationsTracking prices in Kansas City

Actions

Oil industry expert predicts Kansas City gas prices will reach $4.60, won't surpass $5

pumping gas
Posted at 4:46 PM, Jun 06, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-06 19:25:58-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo.  — The Kansas City area still has some of the cheapest gas prices in the country, but it's still a shock when you pull up and read $4.49.

KSHB 41 News talked to an oil industry expert who's been in the business for the last 30 years, who says he doesn't expect it to surpass $5. We'll get into that in just a second.

It's getting to that point.

"I have to start another job just to make up with bills and gas," Hamam Moustafa, college student, said. "It's very hard. $4.50 regular, that's bad."

It's to the point where people aren't just complaining about gas prices, they're having to change their lives to drive.

Moustafa said he lives about 25 to 30 minutes away from work and it now costs $85 to fill up his car, when it used to cost him about $60.

Others have the same problem.

"I'm working more now," Yousif Abbood, Kansas City resident, said. "I have to pick up extra shifts just to pay for gas, pay for other expenses too."

"I guess budgeting is the main thing I'm doing," Mimu Mbogori said, who is a student at the University of Kansas. "Maybe not going home as often as I usually do."

The national average is $4.86 a gallon.

And now, getting gas on the Missouri side of the state line is more expensive than the Kansas side.

AAA's website shows the average price in Missouri is $4.45 and in Kansas, the average price is $4.43.

However, while getting video for this story, we noticed that gas in Kansas City, Missouri, was $4.49 and gas in Roeland Park, Kansas, was $4.39.

"Gasoline prices have already risen over 50% compared to this time last year," Andrew Lipow, president of Lipow Oil Associates, said.

Lipow is a consultant to the oil industry in Houston, Texas, and anticipates the Kansa City area will see gas inch toward $4.60 in the next 10 days. But how high are we talking?

"I think it's unlikely that the Kansas City area is going to see over $5 a gallon, but that of course depends on events that are really beyond our control that are happening overseas," Lipow said.

Even as OPEC+ announced last week they'd start pumping more oil, Lipow says it likely won't provide drivers with much relief right now.

"We're finding that they're running further and further behind in meeting those actual targets and the market has simply become skeptical that as we go forward, that OPEC+ can supply enough oil to meet the demands of the marketplace," Lipow said.

Lipow says the government can do two things: suspend the federal excise tax on gasoline and ease regulations on what type of gasoline refiners can sell.

"In other words, allow refiners to sell us springtime formulation rather than summertime formulation, that would allow more supply to hit the market," Lipow said.

Unfortunately Lipow doesn't have much good news.

He said as Europe cracks down on Russia, we will continue to see high gas prices and it'll take time for all of us to develop alternative supplies.