Gas prices have been creeping up for weeks, but they spiked on Wednesday.
ATLANTA -- Hurricane Isaac is getting the blame for rising gas prices across the country, but there's more to the story, according to certified financial planner Wes Moss.
"Over the last couple of days, oil prices have not gone up," said Moss, Chief Investment Strategist for Capital Investment Advisors. "They've actually come down a little bit."
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Even though oil rigs and refineries have been impacted by the storm, Moss believes a stronger Euro and improving global economy are the real driving forces.
Over the last six weeks, oil prices have climbed $20 a barrel.
"That is a 25 percent swing to the upside for the price of oil," he said. "The last month we've finally seen gas prices follow."
Moss sees no comparison between Isaac nd other hurricanes that have sent gas soaring.
In 2005 with Hurricane Katrina and in 2008 with Hurricanes Ike and Gustav, sudden price hikes and gas shortages prompted former Georgia Governor Sonny Perdue to declare a state of emergency.
That move gave the state regulators control over price gouging.
Without it, market forces remain in control.
"Even if oil prices come down, it will will take a long time for gasoline prices to follow," Moss said. "That's why we're stuck with high-$3 gasoline for at least a month, if not the next two months."
The governor's office of consumer protection will only investigate gas gouging complaints under a declared state emergency.
Even then, it requires proof that the retailer's markup is higher than normal.
According to AAA South, the average for a gallon of regular unleaded in metro Atlanta jumped 21 cents in a week and 48 cents in a month to $3.94 on Friday.