Oil analyst: Gas prices could start climbing by weekend following killing of Iranian general

The climb followed news that Gen. Qassem Soleimani, head of Iran?s elite Quds Force, was killed in an air attack at the Baghdad international airport early Friday.

ATLANTA — Oil prices surged Friday after a U.S military strike killed a top Iranian general in Iraq.

Benchmark U.S. crude climbed $1.87, or 3.1%, to settle at $63.05 per barrel Friday. It had been up 3.6% earlier in the day. Brent crude, used to price international oils, rose $2.35, or 3.5%, to close at $68.60 per barrel.

The climb followed news that Gen. Qassem Soleimani, head of Iran’s elite Quds Force, was killed in an air attack at the Baghdad international airport early Friday.

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So what does that mean for metro Atlantans?

Channel 2 investigative reporter Justin Gray spoke with an oil industry analyst who said the wholesale prices in the metro haven’t changed yet, but they likely will as the higher oil prices trickle down – possibly as soon as this weekend.

“It’s meaningful for consumers,” oil analyst Chris Edmonds said. “At the end of the day, what matter is what you and I pay for gasoline and this will have an impact, at least in the short term.”

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Locksmith Scott Davis told Gray that he is on the road all day every day, and even a temporary gas price increase will make things tough.

“I was having a hard time with finances after Christmas. I didn’t even know if I had enough gas to go to work, to go to my first job. So when it starts going up … it hurts, it hurts the pocket bad,” Davis said.

The question is, how long will the high prices last?

Edmonds told Gray that will depend on what happens next with Iran.

“If there’s more action, oil prices could go higher, gasoline prices could go higher. If there’s no more action, them my guess is prices go back to where they are today,” Edmonds said

The hope is that the spike in prices will only last a couple of weeks.

The Associated Press contributed to this article.