The wholesale price of gas from Hovensa will increase seven cents for the week of Feb. 27-March 4, continuing an unbroken series of increases since the year began, but leaving prices below all-time highs set last year.
According to the refinery, the wholesale, or rack rate for regular grade gasoline will be $3.33 per gallon, up from $3.26 the week before. Premium will be $3.51, up from $3.44.
The rack rate has increased a little every week since the New Year began, but remains below Hovensa’s recent high of $3.38 for regular and $3.59 for premium during the week of Sept. 5, and the all-time high of $3.57 and $3.68, respectively, set the week of May 15, 2011.
The refinery has stopped production, but has said it will continue to supply local gas stations and the V.I. Water and Power Authority until June. At that time the territory will have to procure gasoline from other sources, likely at higher prices than those from Hovensa. Hovensa’s wholesale rate does not include local gasoline taxes of 7 cents per gallon or retailer markup.
St. Croix retailers typically charge 40 to 50 cents above the wholesale rate, while retailers on St. Thomas typically charge roughly 50 cents more than St. Croix retailers.
Prices should not increase immediately at the pump as gas stations must first sell the gas they’ve already purchased at lower prices.