PORTLAND, Maine — The average price of a gallon of regular gasoline in Maine dipped slightly as the national average rose and some gas stations in the Midwest posted sharp one-week spikes in price due to refinery cutbacks.

The gas price tracking site GasBuddy indicated the average for Maine dipped by a little more than 1 cent in the past week, compared with a rise of about 2 cents nationally.

That put Maine’s average at $1.78 per gallon, compared with a $1.71 national average. Maine’s average price was lower than Vermont’s, at $1.86 per gallon, and higher than New Hampshire’s, at $1.69.

Will Speer, an analyst with GasBuddy, indicated in the news release that the national average increase was due largely to refinery cutbacks in the Midwest, which caused regional prices to jump as much as 23 cents in one week.

“The spike occurred on the back of news that Midwest refineries were reducing production rates due to poor economics,” Speer said. “The rest of the U.S. enjoyed another week of declining gas prices.”

Federal and private sector forecasts estimate gas prices will trend lower in 2016 than in 2015, with a less pronounced nationwide rise in prices through the summer.

Darren Fishell

Darren is a Portland-based reporter for the Bangor Daily News writing about the Maine economy and business. He's interested in putting economic data in context and finding the stories behind the numbers.