Gas prices in Tampa Bay continue to linger at a stable level as world markets wait for the next phase of a potential restructuring in the European economy, and they could stay in this range through the holidays.
A gallon of regular unleaded now averages $3.303 in the Tampa Bay area, compared to $3.344 a week ago, according to AAA Auto Club South. Statewide, a gallon averages $3.384, compared to $3.420 a week ago.
The website TampaGasPrices.com tracked a similar move, with gas falling 4.3 cents per gallon.
"I believe prices will remain between $3.35 - $3.60 in Tampa for much of the rest of the year," said Patrick DeHaan, a petroleum analyst with GasBuddy, which publishes TampaGasPrices.com.
Oil prices are hovering around $95 per barrel as European leaders still haven't agreed on a way to resolve the debt crisis there, putting downward pressure on oil, while a U.S. Labor Department report said the unemployment rate fell a bit, adding upward pressure.
"Oil prices are stuck between an uncertain future for Europe's financial system and glimmers of hope for an economic recovery in the U.S.," said Jessica Brady, a spokeswoman for AAA Auto Club South.
Taken together, prices at the pump probably won't change much this week, she said.