Posts Tagged ‘AAA Public Speaker’

Tamra JohnsonNew AAA Survey Reveals Impact of Rising Gas Prices on Consumers’ Lifestyle

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Mar. 28, 2017) – A new AAA survey reveals that nearly a quarter of consumers believe the price at the pump is already too high. AAA projects the national average for a gallon of gasoline to increase 40 cents this summer, peaking near $2.70. To offset the increase in gas prices (about a 70 cent increase from last year at this time), more than 70 percent of consumers say they would make everyday lifestyle or driving habit changes. The top five changes drivers would make include:

Additional Resources

  • Infographic 1 | 2 | 3
  • Combining errands or trips
  • Driving less
  • Reducing shopping or dining out
  • Delaying major purchases
  • Carpooling

However, not everyone will jump to make a change. The survey found that younger Americans (18-34) are more tolerant of higher prices and less likely to change habits compared to older consumers (35 and older).

“Higher gas prices are already influencing the travel industry,” said Bill Sutherland, AAA senior vice president of Travel and Publishing. “The good news is people are still planning to hit the road. With nearly 80 percent of family travelers planning a road trip this year, higher gas prices are making shorter trips to national parks and theme parks the most desired travel destinations.”

During April, Americans across the country will start to see gas prices begin to climb as the industry wraps up spring maintenance and completes the switchover to summer-blend gasoline. Over the years, public opinion for whether a gallon of gasoline is too high or too low has fluctuated as much as the price itself.

  • When gas prices are above the $3.00 benchmark (as they were in 2013 and 2014), Americans believe prices should be six percent lower.
  • When gas prices are below the $3.00 benchmark (as they were in 2015 and 2016), Americans believe a 25 percent increase is too high.

This report presents the findings of a telephone survey conducted among two national probability samples (landline only and cell phone), which, when combined, consists of 1,017 adults, 510 men and 507 women, 18 years of age and older, living in the continental United States. Interviewing for this survey was completed on February 2-5, 2017. 517 interviews were from the landline sample and 500 interviews from the cell phone sample. This study has an average statistical error of ±3.1 percent at the 95 percent confidence level for all U.S. adults.

As North America’s largest motoring and leisure travel organization, AAA provides more than 57 million members with travel, insurance, financial and automotive-related services. Since its founding in 1902, the not-for-profit, fully tax-paying AAA has been a leader and advocate for the safety and security of all travelers. AAA clubs can be visited on the Internet at AAA.com. Motorists can map a route, identify gas prices, find discounts, book a hotel and access AAA roadside assistance with the AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android. Learn more at AAA.com/mobile.

Tamra Johnson

Today’s national average price at the pump is $2.29 per gallon.  This is the same price as compared to one month ago, but just fractions of a penny below one week ago and 25 cents per gallon more than the same date last year.  The average pump price has decreased nine of the past 10 days.

On Sunday, a joint committee of ministers representing OPEC and non-OPEC countries asked the OPEC Secretariat to examine the market and consider a possible production cut extension beyond the original six- month agreement. Last year, OPEC and non-OPEC countries agreed to cut their output by 1.8 million barrels a day for six months starting in January 2017. The Secretariat is expected to provide a recommendation in April, well before the current agreement is set to expire in June.

Quick Stats

  • The nation’s markets that have seen the largest yearly increases in gas prices are: Washington (+56 cents), Utah (+51 cents), Oregon (+50 cents), Hawaii (+49 cents), Alaska (+49 cents), Idaho (+48 cents), New Jersey (+46 cents), Montana (+38 cents), New Mexico (+34 cents) and Pennsylvania (+34 cents).
  • The nation’s markets that have the least expensive weekly gas prices include: South Carolina ($2.02), Tennessee ($2.04), Alabama ($2.05), Mississippi ($2.05), Oklahoma ($2.06), Missouri ($2.07) Arkansas ($2.07), Virginia ($2.10), Louisiana ($2.10) and Texas ($2.11).

West Coast

Prices on the West Coast remain flat, with six states topping the list of most expensive markets: Hawaii ($3.07), California ($2.98), Washington ($2.84), Alaska ($2.79), Oregon ($2.67) and Nevada ($2.65). The West Coast is also home to some of the largest year over year price increases: Washington (+56 cents), Oregon (+50 cents), Hawaii (+49 cents) and Alaska (+49 cents). The latest Energy Information Administration (EIA) report shows that despite a nearly five percent increase in refinery utilization, gasoline inventories in the region dropped 428,000 bbl to 28.599 million bbl last week.

Rockies

Drivers in the Rockies have not seen much movement at the pump this week, with prices moving +/- 2 cents or less in most markets. The region historically has been among the more stable in the nation due to its insulated location. However, supply issues resulting from problems on the Wahsatch Pipeline earlier this year has landed Utah (+51 cents), Idaho (+48 cents) and Montana (+38 cents), on the top 10 list of largest yearly increases.

Great Lakes and Central States

Drivers in the Great Lakes and Central regions saw the largest discounts at the pump last week, with seven states topping the list of largest weekly declines: Ohio (-7 cents), Michigan (-7 cents), Indiana (-6 cents), Missouri (-4 cents), Illinois (-3 cents), Iowa (-3 cents) and Kentucky (-2 cents). OPIS reports that the region has been clearing its system of high-RVP gasoline in preparation for the switch to lower RVP summer blend gasoline next month. The switch will mean higher prices at the pump for drivers in both regions.

Mid-Atlantic and Northeast

Prices in much of the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast remain relatively steady on the week with Pennsylvania ($2.48) and Washington D.C. ($2.45) both landing on the list of top 10 most expensive markets. Regional gasoline inventories remain low as the region continues to remove winter-grade gasoline from the system. Pump prices in the region will likely begin to climb around April 10, when gasoline RVP in the New York market makes the official shift to summer-grade blends.

South and Southeast

Drivers in the South and Southeast regions continue to enjoy the lowest prices at the pump with six states landing on the nation’s list of cheapest retail markets: South Carolina ($2.02), Alabama ($2.05), Mississippi ($2.05), Arkansas ($2.07), Louisiana ($2.10) and Texas ($2.11). The latest EIA report shows that regional gasoline inventories remained steady last week while refinery utilization rates increased three percent. OPIS reports that the increases will help stabilize gasoline supply as refineries wrap-up spring maintenance and prepare for the busy summer refining season.

Oil Market Dynamics

Today the market opened posting losses, as traders doubt the ability of OPEC and other major oil producers to rebalance the market. OPEC’s recent announcement to consider extending production cuts follows news from EIA showing a crude oil build of 5 million barrels for the week ending March 17. That increase brings U.S. inventory levels to a total of 533.1 million barrels. Additionally, Baker Hughes’ reports that the U.S. added 21 oil rigs last week, bringing the country’s total rig count to 652.

The combination of OPEC efforts to rebalance the market and increased U.S. production continues to put pressure on crude oil futures, holding prices below $50 a barrel. Next month, market watchers will pay close attention to the OPEC Secretariat’s upcoming recommendations on whether to extend production cuts beyond June. At the close of Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX, WTI was up 27 cents to settle at $47.97 per barrel.

Motorists can find current gas prices along their route with the free AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android. The app can also be used to map a route, find discounts, book a hotel and access AAA roadside assistance. Learn more at AAA.com/mobile.

Average Gas Prices Holding Steady to Begin Spring

March 20th, 2017 by Jessica Souto

Tamra Johnson

Pump prices remain relatively stable, with today’s national average price for regular unleaded gasoline holding at $2.29 per gallon. Today’s average price is down by fractions of a penny compared to one week ago, but has moved one cent higher compared to last month. Drivers are paying 31 cents more per gallon at the pump compared to this same date last year.

Quick Stats

  • The nation’s top ten least expensive markets are: South Carolina ($2.01), Tennessee ($2.04), Alabama ($2.05), Mississippi ($2.06), Arkansas ($2.08), Texas ($2.09), Virginia ($2.09), Oklahoma ($2.09), Louisiana ($2.10) and Missouri ($2.10).
  • The nation’s markets that have seen the largest yearly increases include: Washington (+61 cents), Utah (+60 cents), Alaska (+58 cents), Idaho (+56 cents), New Jersey (+55 cents), Oregon (+54 cents), Hawaii (+51 cents), Montana (+44 cents), Pennsylvania (+43 cents) and Connecticut (+40 cents).

West Coast

Gas prices on the West Coast remain the highest in the country with six states in the region topping the list of most expensive U.S. markets: Hawaii ($3.07), California ($2.99), Washington ($2.85), Alaska ($2.80), Oregon ($2.68) and Nevada ($2.66). The latest US Energy Information Administration (EIA) report shows that gasoline inventories dropped to 29.027 million bbl for the week ending March 10, while regional refinery production increased 17 percent. OPIS reports that production increases are likely the result of the completion of a major 45-day turnaround at Phillips 66’s 107,500- b/d refinery in Ferndale, Washington.

Rockies

Gas prices remain stable over the past week with averages in most states moving by just fractions of a penny. The region is home to some of the largest yearly state increases: Utah (+60 cents), Idaho (+56 cents) and Montana (+44 cents). OPIS reports that recent increases near the Utah area largely resulted from a shutdown on the Wahsatch Pipeline, which negatively impacted refinery production in the region. Plains All American Pipeline completed repairs on the pipeline March 10.

Great Lakes and Central States

Volatility continues to characterize pump prices in the Great Lakes region. Some states reflected double-digit declines at the start of the month, only to see gains over the past seven days: Ohio (+6 cents), Indiana (+6 cents) and Michigan (+2 cents). Drivers in other states saw modest declines on the week: Iowa (-3 cents), Minnesota (-3 cents), Wisconsin (-3 cents) and Kansas (-2 cents).

OPIS reports that a unit fire has slowed production at LyondellBasell’s 302,300-b/d refinery in Houston, Texas. The refiner ships most of its gasoline to the Midwest through the Magellan Pipeline. Wolverine Pipe Line Company reports that the new Detroit Metro Access Pipeline (DMAP) is now in service and is transporting refined oil products from Chicago to Detroit.

Mid-Atlantic and Northeast

The East Coast saw a decline in gasoline supplies last week as refiners prepare to switch from winter-blend to summer-blend gasoline. Despite the decline in supply, prices in the regions remain stable on the week with Pennsylvania ($2.49), Washington, D.C. ($2.46), New York ($2.43) and Connecticut ($2.39) all landing on the list of top 15 most expensive markets in the country.

 

South and Southeast

Markets in the South and Southeast continue to post some of the lowest prices for retail gasoline in the nation, including South Carolina ($2.02), Tennessee ($2.04), Alabama ($2.05), Mississippi ($2.06), Arkansas ($2.08), Texas ($2.09), Oklahoma ($2.10) and Louisiana ($2.10). The latest EIA report shows that Gulf Coast crude oil inventories dropped 2.4 million bbl for the week ending March 10. The declines are the result of a nearly 500,000-b/d drop in regional imports last week. As mentioned in the Great Lakes/Central States summary, OPIS reports that a unit fire at LyondellBasell’s 302,300-b/d Houston, Texas, refinery resulted in production cuts. The refiner ships most of its product to the Midwest via the Magellan Pipeline.

Oil Market Dynamics

While prices have been flat in recent weeks, a long-term bearish sentiment continues to underscore the global oil market as speculation about the balance between OPEC cuts and U.S. production drives the market. Last Friday, OPEC’s Joint Technical Committee met to review compliance and participant’s level of adherence to the production cut agreement. Following the JTC meeting, Russia agreed to drop total production by 300,000 barrels per day by the end of April and pledged to maintain that level until the deal expires at the end of June. Saudi Arabia followed the compliance meeting with news that it may consider working with partner countries to continue the cuts beyond the June agreement deadline.

Even with OPEC’s compliance in the 90 percent range, U.S. production continues to cut into any rebalancing efforts by OPEC and non-OPEC countries. On Friday, oil service company, Baker Hughes, reported that the U.S. rig count increased again last week when producers added 14 drilling rigs, bringing the total rig count to 631 in the United States. Traders will continue to watch whether OPEC and non-OPEC members make moves to further cut production in an attempt to balance the global oil supply. At the close of Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX, WTI was up three cents to settle at $48.78 per barrel.

Motorists can find current gas prices along their route with the free AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android. The app can also be used to map a route, find discounts, book a hotel and access AAA roadside assistance. Learn more at AAA.com/mobile.

Gas Prices Make Slow 10 Day Decline

March 13th, 2017 by Jessica Souto

Tamra Johnson

After remaining relatively flat, the national average price for regular unleaded gasoline has now fallen for 10 straight days to today’s average of $2.30 per gallon. Today’s national average is one cent less than one week ago and two cents more than one month ago. Compared to this same date last year, consumers are paying 37 cents more per gallon at the pump.

Gas prices may continue to drop in the near future due to declining crude oil prices and a well-supplied market, but will begin to creep up again over the next month due to seasonal refinery maintenance and the May 1 required switchover for producing summer-blend gasoline. This prediction comes with the necessary caveat that an unexpected market-moving event, such as unplanned domestic refinery maintenance or further production cuts from OPEC and non-OPEC countries, could further impact prices and supply.

Quick Stats

  • The nation’s top five least expensive markets are: South Carolina ($2.03), Tennessee ($2.05), Alabama ($2.05), Mississippi ($2.07) and Arkansas ($2.09).
  • The nation’s most dramatic weekly change in prices include: Indiana (-11 cents), Ohio (-8 cents), Michigan (-8 cents), Kentucky (-8 cents) and Oregon (+8 cents).

West Coast

Most drivers in the West Coast saw increases at the pump this week: Oregon (+8 cents), Washington (+5 cents), Nevada (+3 cents), Alaska (+2 cents) and California (+2 cents). Maintenance continues at Phillips 66’s 107,500-b/d refinery in Ferndale, Washington, while most other regional refiners have already made the switch to summer-blend gasoline. The impact of refinery maintenance was evident in the latest Energy Information Administration (EIA) report, which shows West Coast refinery utilization dropping 0.4 percent and refinery crude inputs dropping 44,000 b/d to a total of 2.162 million b/d. The region continues to be the priciest in the nation with Hawaii ($3.07), California ($3.01), Washington ($2.84), Alaska ($2.79), Oregon ($2.68) and Nevada ($2.64) all topping the list of most expensive markets.

Rockies

Gas prices in the Rocky Mountain states are a mixed bag of increases and decreases on the week, with Utah (+7 cents) landing on the top five list of largest weekly increases. Plains All American Pipeline completed repairs on the Wahsatch Pipeline late Friday evening. The pipeline, which receives crude oil from locations near Evanston, Wyoming, and makes deliveries to refineries in Salt Lake City, shut down February 10, due to indications of soil movement. OPIS reports that many local refiners cut production rates and relied on crude delivery by trucks while the pipeline was offline.

Great Lakes and Central States

The latest EIA report shows a 69,000 b/d drop in gasoline production by regional refiners and blenders to 2.364 million b/d for the week ending on March 3. Local refinery issues are the likely cause of production declines. Phillips 66’s 330,000-b/d Wood River refinery is currently undergoing planned and unplanned maintenance. CITGO’s 185,200-b/d refinery in Lemont, Illinois, lost a compressor at a processing unit and ExxonMobil Inc.’s 260,000-b/d refinery in Joliet, Illinois, is undergoing unplanned maintenance due to undisclosed equipment failure.

Despite recent refinery issues, some drivers in the regions are seeing significant declines at the pump: Indiana (-11 cents), Ohio (-8 cents), Michigan (-8 cents), Kentucky (-8 cents) and Illinois (-5 cents).

Northeast and Mid-Atlantic

Prices in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast regions have remained relatively flat over the past week, moving by +/- 2 cents or less in most parts of the regions. According to the latest EIA report, regional gasoline inventories dropped by 3.8 million bbl. Pennsylvania ($2.49), Washington D.C. ($2.47) and New York ($2.43), remain on the list of most expensive markets in the country while Tennessee ($2.05) and Virginia ($2.10), both land on the top 10 list of least expensive markets.

South and Southeast

The Southern region continues to remain home to some of the nation’s lowest average prices for retail gasoline with six of the nation’s top 10 least expensive markets: South Carolina ($2.03), Alabama ($2.05), Mississippi ($2.07), Arkansas ($2.09), Texas ($2.10) and Louisiana ($2.10). The latest EIA report shows a drop in regional gasoline inventories as refiners prepare to make the switch to summer-blend gasoline.

Oil Market Dynamics

Crude prices declined again today as the global oil market remains oversupplied, and relatively high U.S. production levels continue to support bearish market sentiment. The possibility of continued production compliance by OPEC is likely to keep the market relatively fickle in the near term. Traders will continue to keep a close eye on OPEC compliance and U.S. supply and production. At the close of Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX, WTI was down 79 cents to settle at $48.49 per barrel.

Motorists can find current gas prices along their route with the free AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android. The app can also be used to map a route, find discounts, book a hotel and access AAA roadside assistance. Learn more at AAA.com/mobile.

D+ Infrastructure is Failing American Drivers

March 9th, 2017 by Jessica Souto

Tamra Johnson

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Mar. 9, 2017): Statement by AAA President & CEO Marshall Doney:

“Today the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) issued their latest Infrastructure Report Card showing that we continue to neglect our nation’s growing infrastructure needs. This year’s report card gives America’s roads a “D” and bridges a “C+”. More than 35,000 lives were lost in vehicle crashes last year alone and failing roads and bridges are only making American drivers more unsafe behind the wheel.

It is time to reverse this trend. AAA believes that an increase to the federal gas tax remains the most viable near-term solution to provide for additional infrastructure funding, but recognizes that all alternatives need to be a part of the discussion. ASCE’s report card is a reminder that while infrastructure improvements are underway, there remains a backlog of projects that need to be addressed immediately. The President has acknowledged the national importance of infrastructure investment.  AAA urges policymakers and the Administration to lay out a long-term funding strategy to repair and maintain America’s roadways so that we can improve driver’s safety and mobility today and well into the future.”

 

ErinSteppNew AAA survey reveals that Americans still leery of a driverless future

ORLANDO, Fla. (March 7, 2017) – A new report from AAA reveals that the majority of U.S. drivers seek autonomous technologies in their next vehicle, but they continue to fear the fully self-driving car. Despite the prospect that autonomous vehicles will be safer, more efficient and more convenient than their human-driven counterparts, three-quarters of U.S. drivers report feeling afraid to ride in a self-driving car, and only 10 percent report that they’d actually feel safer sharing the roads with driverless vehicles. As automakers press forward in the development of autonomous vehicles, AAA urges the gradual, safe introduction of these technologies to ensure that American drivers are informed, prepared and comfortable with this shift in mobility.

Additional Resources

“A great race towards autonomy is underway and companies are vying to introduce the first driverless cars to our roadways,” said Greg Brannon, AAA’s director of Automotive Engineering and Industry Relations. “However, while U.S. drivers are eager to buy vehicles equipped with autonomous technology, they continue to fear a fully self-driving vehicle.”

In 2016, a AAA survey found that three-quarters of Americans reported feeling afraid to ride in a self-driving car. One year later, a new AAA survey found that fear is unchanged. While the majority are afraid to ride in a fully self-driving vehicle, the latest survey also found that the majority (59%) of Americans are keen to have autonomous features in their next vehicle. This marked contrast suggests that American drivers are ready embrace autonomous technology, but they are not yet ready to give up full control.

“U.S. drivers may experience the driver assistance technologies in their cars today and feel they don’t work consistently enough to replace a human driver – and they’re correct,” continued Brannon. “While these technologies will continue to improve over time, it’s important that consumers understand that today’s systems require your eyes on the road and your hands on the wheel.”

Additional survey findings include:

  • Half (54%) of U.S. drivers feel less safe at the prospect of sharing the road with a self-driving vehicle, while one-third (34%) feel it wouldn’t make a difference and only 10 percent say they would feel safer.
    • Women (58%) are more likely to feel less safe than men (49%).
    • Baby Boomers (60%) are more likely to feel less safe than Generation X (56%) or Millennials (41%)
  • The majority (59%) of U.S. drivers want autonomous vehicle technology in their next vehicle, while the remainder do not (25%) or are unsure (16%).
    • Millennials (70%) are the most likely to want the technologies, compared to Generation X (54%) and Baby Boomers (51%).
  • Three-quarters (78%) of Americans are afraid to ride in a self-driving vehicle.
    • Baby Boomers (85%) are more likely to be afraid than Millennials (73%) and Generation X (75%) drivers.
    • Women (85%) are more likely to be afraid than men (69%).

To educate consumers on the effectiveness of emerging vehicle technologies, AAA is committed to the on-going, unbiased testing of automated vehicle technologies. Previous testing of automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, self-parking technology and lane keeping systems has shown both great promise and great variation. This variation may be particularly concerning to consumers, with AAA’s survey revealing that 81 percent of Americans feel that automated vehicle systems should all work similarly and consistently across all vehicle manufacturers. Future AAA testing will look at how well systems work together to achieve higher levels of automation.

“Every year, we lose approximately 35,000 people on America’s roadways, most as a result of human error,” said Jill Ingrassia, AAA’s managing director of Government Relations and Traffic Safety. “Connected and automated vehicle technologies have the potential to dramatically reduce this number, and automakers, government agencies and safety organizations like AAA must continue working together to ensure that these new vehicles are safely tested and deployed.”

For additional information about the survey, including a fact sheet and infographics, visit NewsRoom.AAA.com.

As North America’s largest motoring and leisure travel organization, AAA provides more than 56 million members with travel, insurance, financial and automotive-related services. Since its founding in 1902, the not-for-profit, fully tax-paying AAA has been a leader and advocate for the safety and security of all travelers. Motorists can map a route, identify gas prices, find discounts, book a hotel and access AAA roadside assistance with the AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android. Learn more at AAA.com/mobile. AAA clubs can be visited on the Internet at AAA.com.

Tamra Johnson

Oil prices slipped fractions of a penny over the weekend, reaching today’s national average price for regular unleaded gasoline of $2.31 per gallon. Today’s price is still two cents more than one week ago, four cents more compared to one month ago and 50 cents more per gallon year-over-year. Retail prices continue to fluctuate but have remained between $2.28-2.32 for more than a month as reports of increased U.S. production continues to counter OPEC rebalancing efforts.

Quick Stats

  • The nation’s top five most expensive markets are: Hawaii ($3.08), California ($2.99), Washington ($2.79), Alaska ($2.77) and Nevada ($2.61).
  • The nation’s top least expensive markets are: South Carolina ($2.05), Tennessee ($2.07), Alabama ($2.07), Mississippi ($2.09) and Arkansas ($2.11).
  • The nation’s most dramatic weekly price increases include: Michigan (+12 cents), Indiana (+11 cents), Ohio (+9 cents), Illinois (+7 cents) and Kentucky (+6 cents).

West Coast

Prices on the West Coast remain the most expensive in the nation, with six states landing on the list of most expensive markets: Hawaii ($3.08), California ($2.99), Washington ($2.79), Alaska ($2.77), Nevada ($2.61) and Oregon ($2.60). Prices in most parts of the region have followed the national average trending higher, with Oregon (+5 cents), California (+5 cents), Nevada (+4 cents) and Washington (+3 cents) all making the list of top ten largest increases. Refiners in California have already made the switch to summer-blend gasoline and OPIS reports that many refineries continue to run at reduced rates due to planned and unplanned maintenance. Refiners in Washington are also undergoing planned maintenance with Phillips 66 conducting turnaround at its 107,500-b/d refinery in Ferndale, Washington, and BP undergoing planned maintenance at its 236,000-b/d Cherry Point refinery in Ferndale, Washington. The latest EIA report shows that West Coast refineries cut processing by 25,000 b/d to a total of 2.206 million b/d of crude oil for the week ending Feb. 24.

Rockies

Issues on the Wahsatch Pipeline are creating tight supply and price increases across most of the region. Plains All American Pipeline released a statement Friday saying that the Salt Lake City, Utah, crude pipeline is expected to reopen this weekend, after shutting down February 10 due to indications of soil movement. The Wahsatch Pipeline receives crude oil from locations near Evanston, Wyoming, and makes deliveries to refineries in Salt Lake City. OPIS reports that Tesoro and HollyFrontier have cut output at their Salt Lake City refineries due to low supplies.

Great Lakes and Central States

These regions saw some of the most dramatic price increases this week: Michigan (+12 cents), Indiana (+11 cents), Ohio (+9 cents), Illinois (+7 cents) and Kentucky (+6 cents). Price increases can be attributed to issues at some regional refineries. Last week, Phillips 66 reported problems with an oil-processing unit at its 330,000-b/d Wood River refinery in Roxana, Illinois. OPIS reports that CITGO experienced power outages at its 185,200-b/d refinery in Lemont, Illinois, last week due to severe weather, while ExxonMobil also experienced weather related issues at its 260,000-b/d Joliet refinery in Channahon, Illinois. 

 

Northeast and Mid-Atlantic

The Northeast and Mid-Atlantic are some of the only regions to see moderate declines on the week. Maine, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, New York, New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Connecticut all saw pump prices move down by a penny or less. Gasoline inventories remain high in the regions. OPIS reports that the healthy supply should keep prices relatively stable as the market prepares for the transition to summer-blend gasoline. Despite minor declines on the week, Pennsylvania ($2.50), Washington D.C. ($2.48) and New York ($2.45) remain some of the most expensive markets in the country.

South and Southeast

States in the south and southeast continue to top the list for lowest prices, with eight out of ten of the nation’s cheapest retail markets located in the regions: South Carolina ($2.05), Tennessee ($2.07), Alabama ($2.07), Mississippi ($2.09), Arkansas ($2.11), Texas ($2.11), Louisiana ($2.12) and Oklahoma ($2.12). The latest EIA report shows that regional gasoline stocks dropped 100,000 bbl to 81.6 million bbl. OPIS reports that Valero experienced some issues at its refinery in Corpus Christi, Texas, last week when a compressor tripped offline due to an instrumentation failure.

Oil Market Dynamics

Today, markets opened posting crude oil losses pressured lower by an increasing U.S. rig count and questions about Russia’s ability to comply with OPEC cuts. Oil production in the U.S. continues to rise, and according to oil services company Baker Hughes, U.S. drillers added seven oil rigs last week, bringing the total rig count up to 609, the most since October 2015.

Globally, the Russian energy ministry released oil production data showing that their oil production has remained unchanged as compared to last month. This information has unsettled traders and many speculate whether or not Russia will thwart efforts by OPEC to rebalance global oil supply. Traders will continue to watch how the market reacts to increased U.S. oil production and look for signs as to whether or not Russia implements production cuts. At the closing of Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX, WTI was up 72 cents to settle at $53.33 per barrel.

Motorists can find current gas prices along their route with the free AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android. The app can also be used to map a route, find discounts, book a hotel and access AAA roadside assistance. Learn more at AAA.com/mobile.

Michael Green Contact Tile

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Feb. 28, 2017) AAA’s President and CEO, Marshall Doney, has issued the following statement in response to President Trump’s comments about infrastructure during his first address to a joint session of Congress:

“Tonight, AAA is pleased that President Trump has highlighted the pressing need to improve our nation’s aging infrastructure systems. Cooperation from policymakers on both sides of the aisle will be critical in identifying a long term funding strategy to support and improve a transportation system that reduces congestion, improves roads and helps to keep everyone on the road safer.

A strong and robust transportation system supports the nation’s economy and provides Americans with more choices on where to live, work and engage with their communities. The Federal Highway Administration recently revealed that drivers are logging more miles on the road than ever before. This trend only highlights the growing demands facing America’s roads, bridges and tunnels in the future and justifies the need for greater investment in transportation infrastructure today. Funding the nation’s transportation system might very well require a variety of alternative options and new financing proposals that have yet to be fully evaluated. AAA looks forward to working with the president and members of both parties in the House and Senate to ensure that America’s infrastructure system is safe, reliable and efficient.

Average Gas Price Remains Flat to Close February

February 27th, 2017 by Jessica Souto

Tamra Johnson

National gas prices have remained flat, fluctuating by only a couple of pennies for the last 27 days. Today’s average price for regular unleaded gasoline is $2.29 per gallon, which is the same price as one week ago, same price as compared to one month ago and 55 cents more than the same date last year. In mid-March, prices will likely rise as more refiners begin to switch from winter-blend to summer-blend gasoline and driver demand increases.

Quick Stats

  • The nation’s top five least expensive markets are: South Carolina ($2.03), Alabama ($2.06), Tennessee ($2.07), Mississippi ($2.08) and Texas ($2.08).
  • The nation’s top five most expensive markets include: Hawaii ($3.10), California ($2.94), Washington ($2.75), Alaska ($2.74) and Nevada ($2.57).
  • The nation’s top five markets with the most dramatic weekly changes in prices include: Indiana (-10 cents), Utah (+7 cents), Ohio (+7 cents), Michigan (+5 cents) and Idaho (+5 cents).

West Coast

Hawaii ($3.10) remains the nation’s most expensive market for retail gasoline and drivers in the state are paying 16 cents more per gallon than second-place California ($2.94). Regional neighbors, Washington ($2.75), Alaska ($2.74), Nevada ($2.57) and Oregon ($2.56) join in the rankings as the top six most expensive markets for gas. Tight supply in the region has pressured prices higher in most states. The latest report from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) shows that West Coast gasoline inventories dropped 600,000 bbl to 30.5 million bbl. Last week, OPIS reports that PBF Energy’s Torrance refinery experienced a fire while Tesoro also reported problems at its Wilmington refinery, which has been undergoing planned maintenance since January.

Rockies

Prices in the region remain stable on the week with the exception of Utah (+7 cents) and Idaho (+5 cents) which both saw sizable increases. Plains All American Pipeline reports that the Wahsatch Pipeline — which receives crude oil from locations near Evanston, Wyoming, and delivers to refineries in Salt Lake City, Utah — will remain down until they address “indications of soil movement.” Due to the pipeline issues, OPIS reports that many refiners in the area have been relying on truck deliveries for supply. HollyFrontier, Silver Eagle and Big West Oil have all cut production rates at their Salt Lake City refineries. Tesoro reports that they have resumed operations at its 63,000-b/d Salt Lake City refinery after temporarily shutting down last week due to supply shortages.

Great Lakes and Central States

Indiana (-10 cents), Ohio (+7 cents), Michigan (+5 cents) and Kentucky (+3 cents) are posting the nation’s largest weekly changes. The latest EIA report shows that regional gasoline stocks increased 358,000 bbl, to 60.087 million bbl, while regional refinery utilization dropped for the third consecutive week. HollyFrontier’s 135,000-b/d refinery in El Dorado, Kansas, is currently undergoing planned turnaround work. Region pump prices will likely remain volatile in the coming weeks as refiners begin to make the switch from winter-blend to summer-blend gasoline.

Mid-Atlantic and Northeast

Pump prices in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast regions remain relatively stable, moving +/- 3 cents or less on the week. Pennsylvania ($2.52), Washington D.C. ($2.47) and New York ($2.46), all land on the top 10 list of most expensive markets in the country while Virginia ($2.10) lands on the list of top 10 least expensive markets. The latest EIA report shows that Northeast gasoline inventory dropped to 75.488 million bbl, which is more than 3 million bbl higher than this same period last year.

South and Southeast

The region continues to remain home to the nation’s least expensive markets for retail gasoline: South Carolina ($2.03), Alabama ($2.06), Tennessee ($2.07), Mississippi ($2.08) and Texas ($2.08). The latest EIA report shows that gasoline inventories in the region dropped 1.7 million bbl for the week ending February 17. Last week, OPIS reports that Phillips 66 experienced minor operation issues at its 218,747-b/d Ponca City refinery in Oklahoma and at its 154,000-b/d refinery in Borger, Texas.

Oil Market Dynamics

The market opened Monday morning posting gains following commitments from the United Arab Emirates and Iran to catch up with their promised production cuts. Continued compliance from OPEC countries has kept crude oil trading higher than last year, but rising U.S. production has placed a ceiling on the market leading to flat prices.

U.S. oil production continues to grow steadily as evidenced by the increasing rig count. Friday, oil field service company Baker Hughes reported that the U.S. added five additional rigs bringing to total rig count to 602. Additionally, according to the most recent EIA weekly status report, U.S. crude oil inventories rose to a total of 518.7 million barrels. Traders will continue to watch the impact that increased U.S. production and inventories have on the market going forward. At the close of Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX, WTI was down 46 cents to settle at $53.99 per barrel.

Motorists can find current gas prices along their route with the free AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android. The app can also be used to map a route, find discounts, book a hotel and access AAA roadside assistance. Learn more at AAA.com/mobile.

Average Gas Prices Remain Steady Despite Low Demand

February 21st, 2017 by Jessica Souto

Tamra Johnson

National gas prices have increased fractions of a penny to reach today’s average price for regular unleaded gasoline, which is $2.28 per gallon. Today’s average is the same as one week ago, five cents less compared to one month ago and 56 cents more than the same date last year. Prices continue to remain flat due to lower driving demand and an oversupplied market as a result of increased U.S. production. As refinery maintenance season begins and driving demand increases, we could expect to see some of the gasoline supply in the U.S. soaked up.

Quick Stats

  • The nation’s top five markets that have seen the largest monthly decreases include West Virginia $2.27 (-11 cents), New Jersey $2.33 (-9 cents), Pennsylvania $2.53 (-9 cents), Illinois $2.29 (-9 cents) and Delaware $2.22 (-9 cents).
  • The nation’s top five most expensive markets are Hawaii $3.12, California $2.90, Washington $2.74, Alaska $2.71 and Oregon $2.54.

West Coast

Gas prices on the West Coast continue to be the highest in the country, with every state in the region landing on the top ten list of most expensive markets: Hawaii ($3.12), California ($2.90), Washington ($2.74), Alaska ($2.71), Oregon ($2.54), and Nevada ($2.53). West Coast refinery turnaround work ramped up this week and as a result, the latest EIA report shows a five percent drop in gasoline production. Regional gasoline inventories remained healthy, however, increasing by 860,000 barrels to 31.125 million barrels, the largest build since early January. On Saturday, PBF Energy’s 155,000-b/d Torrance refinery experienced a fire in an oil processing area. OPIS reports that operations in other parts of the refinery have continued while the impacted area has been shut down.

Rockies

Drivers in the region have seen a mixed bag of modest increases and decreases over the past week. Issues with the Wahsatch Pipeline, which receives crude oil from locations near Evanston, Wyoming and delivers to refineries in Salt Lake City, Utah, has caused supply problems for some refiners in the area. OPIS reports that Plains All American Pipeline shut down the pipeline last week to address “indications of soil movement” and will keep it closed until they are able to ensure safe operations. Because of the shutdown, OPIS reports that HollyFrontier, Chevron, Silver Eagle and Big West Oil have had to cut production rates at their Salt Lake City refineries and instead depend on truck delivery for crude supplies. Tesoro shut down production at its 63,000-b/d Salt Lake City refinery due to the pipeline issues. Despite problems with the line, state averages in the Utah area have only moved fractions of a penny on the week.

Northeast and Mid-Atlantic

Over the past week, retail averages have remained stable in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern region, moving by a penny or less in most areas. Pennsylvania ($2.53) and Washington, D.C. ($2.50) are the only places in the regions with an average price at or above $2.50 per gallon and prices overall remain moderate. New Jersey (-9 cents), Pennsylvania (-9 cents), Delaware (-9 cents), Virginia (-9 cents), Maine (-8 cents) and Washington, D.C. (-7 cents) all landed on the top 15 list of largest monthly declines.

According to the latest EIA report, East Coast gasoline stocks increased by 2.5 million bbl to 76.3 million bbl – a record high for the region. OPIS reports that the increases occurred despite lower imports and lower gasoline production over the past week.

Great Lakes and Central States

The Great Lakes and Central States continue to be the most volatile regions in the country for gas prices with four states landing on the top 10 list of largest weekly changes: Indiana (+5 cents), Michigan (-3 cents), Kentucky (-3 cents) and Ohio (-2 cents).

Several refineries in the Great Lakes and Central regions have cut production rates this week due to planned and unplanned maintenance. Phillips 66’s 330,000-b/d Wood River refinery located in Roxana, Illinois reported a problem with an oil processing unit Tuesday, while OPIS also reports that the company’s 218,747-b/d Ponca City refinery in Oklahoma shut down a fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) unit for unplanned maintenance work. This week’s EIA report shows that gasoline inventories in the Midwest declined for the first time in the past six weeks.

South and Southeast

South and Southeastern states continue to dominate the rankings of the nation’s least expensive markets for gas. South Carolina ($2.04), Alabama ($2.06) and Tennessee ($2.06) are the nation’s cheapest markets for retail gasoline. They are followed in the rankings by regional neighbors, Mississippi ($2.08), Texas ($2.08) and Arkansas ($2.10). Spring turnaround season will likely bring price increases at the pump. OPIS reports that Phillips 66 is planning to begin maintenance in the next 10 days at its 154,000-b/d Borger refinery in the Texas Panhandle.

Oil Market Dynamics

Markets opened Tuesday morning reporting gains after OPEC reiterated its commitment to cut production. OPEC’s most recent Monthly Oil Market Report stated that participating countries successfully implemented 90 percent of the agreed production cuts. Last November, OPEC and non-OPEC countries agreed to cut production by 1.8 million barrels per day for six months starting in 2017 and have since hinted at the possibility of extending those cuts further. The impact the OPEC agreement has on the market will depend on the rate at which the participating countries comply with production cuts. At this time U.S. oil production is up and so are crude oil inventories so retail prices have remained fairly steady. This could all change if OPEC maintains its high level of compliance and refinery maintenance season eats into U.S. supply as driving demand increases. Traders will continue to keep a close eye on OPEC compliance and U.S. supply and production. At the close of Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX, WTI was up 4 cents to settle at $53.40 per barrel.

Motorists can find current gas prices along their route with the free AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android. The app can also be used to map a route, find discounts, book a hotel and access AAA roadside assistance. Learn more at AAA.com/mobile.

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