Oil Executive Predicts $5 Gas By 2012

MIAMI (CBS4) – Gasoline prices above $3 a gallon are expected to be around for awhile as demand increases. But, the former president of Shell Oil now says that Americans may end up paying $5 per gallon by the beginning of 2012.

Other oil analysts told CNNmoney.com that gas prices will hit $5 a gallon in the next decade, but not by 2012.

Gas prices have been rising in the U.S. for weeks and crossed the $3 mark for the first time last week since October 2008. Gas prices now are up 4% from November and 16% from 2009, according to AAA.

The Oil Price Information Service estimated that drivers will spend $305 on gasoline in December and prices are up nearly 14% from last December, according to CNNmoney.com.

The spike in gas prices have closely followed a rise in oil prices which are hovering around $90 per barrel. Prices dropped slightly Monday after China raised interest rates.

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