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Keeping Track: prices at the pump

A gallon of regular unleaded hits $1.22 average

If you drive regularly, you've seen the cost of regular gasoline climb sharply this month.

The increase of 7.9 cents a gallon reported last week by the Energy Department was the second-biggest weekly increase on record. (It jumped by 8 cents on March 6, 2000.) The change is largely attributed to crude-oil prices, up about $6 a barrel since mid-January. Most economists say gas prices will climb a bit higher before leveling off.

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West Coast drivers pay the most at the pump, while those in the lower Atlantic states pay least.