Fuel inches closer to buck-fifty mark

TORONTO — North American fuel prices hit another record high Tuesday, as oil futures pushed past US$114 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange — about two bucks higher than last week’s high.

Concerns about insufficient global supply (Russian oil production dropped for the first time in a decade), was said to be responsible for the surge.

At the same time, prices at the pump rose in both Canada and the U.S. this week. Retail gasoline prices south of the border rose to a new average national record of $3.386, while diesel rocketed to a record average of $4.12 a gallon.

In this country, Calgary-based MJ Ervin & Associates Inc. reports that the average price as of Tuesday was a $1.20 for a liter of gas and $1.30 for diesel.

As usual, parts of Atlantic Canada posted the highest pump prices, reaching as high as $1.42 in Truro, N.S. and $1.47 in Labrador City.

Prices in the GTA hovered between $1.25 and $1.30 for diesel, while the average through the Edmonton-Red Deer-Calgary corridor had some of the lowest prices, at about $1.23 a liter.

Those prices, especially for gas, are expected to keep rising as high-demand summer season approaches. In parts of Canada, analysts predict diesel could surpass $1.50.

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