The first of many expected telephone calls from major oil companies telling area service station managers to raise their gasoline prices came this morning.
At Texaco Self Service, 1415 W. Sixth, the cash price of unleaded regular gasoline jumped 7 cents to $134.9 a gallon today. Laura Rose, station manager, said she recieved a call from Texaco with the new price this morning.
Because of rising crude oil prices, oil companies are expected to announce similar pump-price increases soon.
Today, most service stations surveyed continued to hold a price of about $1.27.9 a gallon for unleaded regular.
"We should be seeing a multicent increase at the pump in the next few days," said Terry Porter, an analyst with the Farmers Commodities Corp. in Kansas City.
PORTER, who watches the oil marker for local cooperatives, said the price of crude oil reached a high of $39 a barrel Monday after a speech by an Iraq leader Sunday, threatening an attack on Middle East oil fields.
The crude oil price had leveled off slightly at 10 a.m. today to $38.50 a barrel, but that was still more than $3 a barrel over the cost just a week ago, he said.
And Porter said that at the wholesale level, the prices of both gasoline and heating oil have doubled or nearly doubled since the start of the Middle East crisis, triggered by Iraq's invasion of Kuwait.
He said the wholesale price of both heating oil and gasoline were $1.03 a gallon today. On Aug. 2, the wholesale price of heating oil was 50 cents a gallon and the wholesale price of unleaded gasoline was about 60 cents.
FLOYD GRUVER, petroleum manager of Ampride Farmers Co-op Assn., called the crude oil prices "an all-time high." Gruver also said he expected the price for gasoline at the pump to rise in response to the crude oil price increase.
"The price on the street hasn't reacted yet," Gruver said.
At the First Fuel Bank, 1500 West 23rd, the price for regular unleaded gas bought under contract jumped from $1.16.9 to $1.21.9 today, said Bill Stringer, station manager. The First Fuel Bank sells gasoline contracts for at least 100 gallons of gasoline at a set price.
The street price for people buying gasoline without a contract at First Fuel Bank was $1.27.9 a gallon, which is where it has been for more than a week, Stringer said.