(Updates with comment starting in fourth, prices by city starting in fifth.)
Sept. 8 (Bloomberg) -- The average price for regular gasoline at U.S. pumps rose 2.61 cents in the past two weeks to $3.5847 a gallon, according to Lundberg Survey Inc.
The survey covers the period ended Sept. 6 and is based on information obtained from about 2,500 filling stations by the Camarillo, California-based company.
The average, which reached a year-to-date peak of $3.795 in the period ended Feb. 22, is about 25 cents below the year- earlier price of $3.8376 a gallon.
“The issue of U.S. monetary policy combined with Syria jitters added strength to prices,” Trilby Lundberg, president of Lundberg Survey, said in a telephone interview. “Gasoline prices will not necessarily continue rising from here. It will depend mostly on what crude-oil prices do.”
The highest price for gasoline in the lower 48 U.S. states among the markets surveyed was in Chicago, where the average price was $3.92 a gallon, Lundberg said.
The lowest price was in Tucson, Arizona, where customers paid an average of $3.27 a gallon. Regular gasoline averaged $3.83 a gallon on Long Island, New York, and $3.85 in Los Angeles.
Gasoline futures on the New York Mercantile Exchange fell 15.35 cents, or 5.1 percent, to $2.8537 a gallon in the two weeks to Sept. 6.
U.S. gasoline stockpiles slid 1.83 million barrels in the week ended Aug. 30 to 216 million, according to data from the Energy Information Administration, the statistical arm of the Energy Department.
The front-month West Texas Intermediate crude contract settled at $110.53 a barrel on the Nymex on Sept. 6, the highest price since May 2011. The contract rose $4.11, or 3.9 percent, in two weeks.
Crude inventories slipped 1.84 million barrels in the week ended Aug. 30 to 360.2 million. Stockpiles at Cushing, Oklahoma, the delivery point for WTI, fell 1.83 million barrels to 34.8 million, the lowest level since February 2012.
WTI will probably advance next week on the prospect of a U.S. attack against Syria, improving economic data and falling American oil stockpiles, a Bloomberg survey showed. Sixteen of 36 analysts, or 44 percent, forecast crude will increase through Sept. 13. Fifteen respondents, or 42 percent, predicted a decline and five said that there would be no change.
--With assistance from Mark Shenk in New York. Editors: Richard Stubbe, Margot Habiby