Gas prices have jumped about 20 cents at most metro-east gas stations.
A gallon of regular unleaded fuel cost $3.19 in Belleville Wednesday. During the evening and Thursday morning hours stations upped their price to $3.39.
Experts say the increase in part of a national trend. They blame higher prices on refinery problems that have choked the flow of fuel. Some also believe that the compromise to resolve the "fiscal cliff" issue has given consumers more confidence in the economy, increasing demand for fuel.
Despite the increases, the American Automobile Association predicts that gas prices will average about a quarter less per gallon in 2013 than it cost in 2012. The average price of gas in 2012 was $3.63 a gallon.