Archive for the ‘Fuel’ Category

Pump Price Trends Falling into Place for Autumn

September 9th, 2019 by AAA Public Affairs

Gas prices continue to trend – slowly, but surely – cheaper with half of all states seeing pump prices drop two-cents on the week. This caused the national average to push cheaper by a penny down to $2.56. Today’s average is 11-cents less than a month ago and 28-cents cheaper than a year ago. 

In its latest weekly report, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) notes that U.S. gasoline demand saw a steady decline from 9.9 million b/d to 9.4 million b/d, a reading typical for the start of fall. In addition to the drop in demand, EIA data also shows that domestic gasoline stocks fell by 2 million bbl, which is mostly attributed to exports.

“Gasoline demand in early September generally declines alongside stock levels as refineries prepare for the switchover to winter-blend gasoline and undergo maintenance,” said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson. “These typical trends mean savings for motorists, leading the way for potentially some of the cheapest gas prices at the end of the year.”

While state averages range from as expensive as $3.65 in Hawaii to as cheap as $2.16 in Mississippi, nearly all state averages are 20-55 cents cheaper than this time last year.

Quick Stats

  • The nation’s top 10 largest weekly changes are: Ohio (-13 cents), Illinois (-7 cents), Michigan (+4 cents), New Jersey (-4 cents), Washington, D.C. (-4 cents), Rhode Island (-4 cents), Maryland (-4 cents), Massachusetts (-3 cents), Connecticut (-3 cents) and Indiana (+3 cents).
  • The nation’s top 10 least expensive markets are: Mississippi ($2.16), Louisiana ($2.17), Alabama ($2.20), Arkansas ($2.23), South Carolina ($2.23), Oklahoma ($2.25), Tennessee ($2.25), Texas ($2.27), Missouri ($2.28) and Virginia ($2.29).

South and Southeast

Gas prices in Florida are inching down toward pre-Hurricane Dorian pump prices. Ahead of the storm, Florida’s average spiked eight cents from $2.36 to $2.44. Today’s state average is $2.42. Georgia and South Carolina saw minimal impact from the storm.

On the week, all states have cheaper or stable gas prices – by as much as three cents. Across the region, state averages range between $2.16 – $2.42.

Gas prices in the coming week may see volatility due to fluctuation with gasoline stocks. While regional refinery utilization holds strong at 95%, gasoline stocks dropped by 3.2 million bbl in the EIA’s latest report. That sinks total stock levels to 77.1 million, which is the lowest level at the end of August for the region since 2015. The draw can be attributed to an increase in exports, which is a trend typically seen in the fall. The fluctuation in stocks could lead to some slight increases at the pump this week, but likely only by a few cents. 

Mid-Atlantic and Northeast

Compared to a year ago, pump prices in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast states are 22 to 55 cents cheaper, with Delaware (-55 cents) having the largest change in the country. Maryland (-42 cents) and Washington, D.C. (-37 cents) also land on the top 10 list for largest yearly decreases.

The yearly gas price gap is likely only to widen more. with all states in the region seeing gas prices decrease or remain stable on the week.

Prices should remain mostly stable or cheaper for the coming week as the latest EIA data reports increases in regional gasoline stocks. Additionally, regional refinery utilization bumped up for the week ending August 30. Stocks have been consistently building for the past five weeks, up from 59.1 million bbl to 65 million bbl. However, at 65 million bbl, supplies still lag behind year-ago levels but are ahead of the five-year average. 

Great Lakes and Central States

While gas prices are 13 cents cheaper on the week in Ohio ($2.47), motorists in Michigan ($2.64) are paying nearly a nickel more compared to last Monday. Also seeing increases at the pump at the start of the workweek: Indiana (+3 cents), Kansas (+1 cent) and Missouri (+1 cent). Volatility is no stranger to the Great Lakes and Central States, where gas prices can fluctuate either way despite strong gasoline stock levels and healthy demand.

For the past three weeks, gasoline stocks have hovered at the 51 million bbl mark while regional refinery utilization stabilized mostly at 100%, according to the EIA. These two factors should ultimately keep gas prices cheaper for the region for the coming weeks with the exception of typical volatility mostly in Ohio, Michigan and Illinois.

Rockies

Motorists in Colorado ($2.57) are paying three cents more to fill-up on the week – the only state in the region to see an increase at the pump. Utah and Idaho prices are both three cents cheaper. Pump prices were stable on the week in Wyoming ($2.68) and Montana ($2.72).

All states in the region rank among the top 15 most expensive gas prices in the country with the exception of Colorado, which ranks 20th. That being said, pump prices across the region are on average 33 cents less than this time last year.

Gasoline stocks saw a small build of 54,000 bbl to bump regional stock levels to 7.5 million. The EIA data also reports held regional refinery utilization is strong at 102%. In fact, since mid-July regional refinery utilization has been at or above the 100% mark for six weeks. This ultimately has contributed to higher stock levels and lower gas prices for motorist in the Rockies states.

West Coast

Motorists in the West Coast region are paying the highest pump prices in the nation, with all states in the region landing on the top 10 most expensive list today. Hawaii ($3.65) and California ($3.63) are the most expensive markets in the country. Washington ($3.19), Nevada ($3.11), Oregon ($3.04), Alaska ($2.95) and Arizona ($2.88) follow. Most state averages in the region have decreased on the week. However, California and Arizona saw increases at a penny each.

The EIA’s recent report for the week ending on Aug. 30 showed that West Coast gasoline stocks decreased by 600,000 bbl. The total level is now 28.4 million bbl, which is in line with stock levels at the end of August 2018. Prices in the region will likely decline this week.

Oil market dynamics

At the close of Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX, WTI increased by 22 cents to settle at $56.52. Domestic crude prices rose last week after the EIA reported that total domestic crude inventories fell by 4.8 million bbl. At 423 million bbl, stocks are approximately 21.5 million bbl higher than were they were at the end of August 2018. Higher inventory levels have helped to keep oil cheaper this year over last, but if EIA’s report this week shows that stocks continue to shrink, prices could end the week higher again. Alternatively, if ongoing trade tensions between the U.S. and China escalate, crude prices could fall.   

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.

On the week, gas prices are as much as nine cents cheaper in every state except California, (+5 cents), Florida (+4 cents), Ohio (+2 cents) and South Carolina (+1 cent).

Hurricane Dorian has been the driver for the increases in Florida and, most likely, South Carolina.

“As an east coast storm, Hurricane Dorian is not threatening major oil and gas infrastructure so its impact is localized to its path along the East Coast,” said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson. “For the rest of the country, demand, which remains high, is chipping away at supply, but not at a high enough rate to increase gas prices.”

Today’s national average is $2.57, which is a penny cheaper than last week, 14-cents less than a month ago and 26-cents cheaper than a year ago.

Quick Stats

  • The nation’s top 10 least expensive markets are: Louisiana ($2.18), Mississippi ($2.18), Alabama ($2.21), South Carolina ($2.24), Arkansas ($2.25), Tennessee ($2.26), Oklahoma ($2.26), Missouri ($2.27), Texas ($2.27) and Virginia ($2.31). 
  • The nation’s top 10 largest weekly changes are: Washington, D.C. (-10 cents), Michigan (-9 cents), Delaware (-7 cents), California (+5 cents), Maryland (-5 cents), Texas (-5 cents), Florida (+4 cents), Nebraska (-4 cents), New Jersey (-4 cents) and Iowa (-3 cents).

South and Southeast

Hurricane Dorian drove Florida’s gas price average up four-cents on the week and is starting to impact pump prices in Georgia and South Carolina by pennies. Some gas stations in the Sunshine state were reporting fuel shortages, due to motorists filling-up ahead of the storm. Those shortages will be short-lived as fuel will be re-supplied once tanker trucks can travel into any impacted areas.

The rest of the region has not been impacted by the hurricane and on the week gas prices are as much as a nickel cheaper in Texas. Most states saw prices push cheaper by two to three cents. At $2.18, Louisiana and Mississippi carry the cheapest gas price averages in the country.

The region saw a nearly 3 million bbl draw on gasoline stocks in the Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) report for the week ending Aug. 23. That drop brought total levels down to 80 million bbl, which is the lowest regional supply level since mid-April of this year. Regardless, it is a healthy supply level and provides the ability to replenish any shortages in Florida.

Great Lakes and Central States

Most states in the Great Lakes and Central region have gas price averages that are two to four cents cheaper than last week. Michigan (-9 cents) and Ohio (+2 cent) are the outliers. Illinois ($2.71) carries the most expensive average followed by Ohio ($2.59) and Michigan ($2.58). On the other side of the coin, Missouri ($2.27), Kentucky ($2.32) and Kansas ($2.32) are the cheapest in the region.

Indiana (-35 cents), Kentucky (-23 cents) and Illinois (-22 cents) lead the nation with the largest monthly decreases. Ohio (-21 cents), Wisconsin (-19 cents) and Missouri (-19 cents) round out this top 10 list.

Gasoline stocks remain stable at 51 million bbl, the healthiest supply level seen since April for the Great Lakes and Central states region. Regional refinery utilization hit 100% in the EIA’s latest report. The high refinery rate and healthy stock level are working together to push prices cheaper for most of the region, a trend that should continue into September.

Mid-Atlantic and Northeast

Four Mid-Atlantic and Northeast states land on the top 10 list for largest weekly decreases: Washington, D.C. (-10 cents), Delaware (-7 cents), Maryland (-5 cents) and New Jersey (-4 cents). All states have cheaper gas prices, with a penny being the smallest decline since last Monday.

As gas prices decline for the region, New York ($2.76) is the only state in the region to land on the top 10 most expensive state list this week. Connecticut ($2.73) ranks as the 11th highest average in the country and Pennsylvania ($2.71) is 13th. Tennessee ($2.26) has the cheapest average in the region.

Regional gasoline stocks added 1.6 million bbl for the week ending Aug. 23.  At 63.9 million bbl, stock levels are at their highest point in three months and on par with levels this time last year. This is positive news for the region in light of stock decreases seen earlier this summer due to the fire and explosion at the Philadelphia Energy Solutions (PES) refinery in Pennsylvania. With regional refinery utilization down to 66%, it’s likely that most of the increase in supply is a result of imports.

Rockies

Utah (-4 cents) had the largest decrease in the region on the week followed by Idaho (-3 cents). Meanwhile, pump prices in Idaho, Wyoming and Montana only decreased by a penny or two. At $2.54, Colorado saw no movement.

Compared to this time last year, gas prices are at least 30-cents cheaper in all states except one: Idaho (-45 cents), Utah (-37 cents), Colorado (-33 cents), Wyoming (- 30 cents) and Montana (-22 cents).

EIA data reports regional refinery utilization increased for another week, this time to 102%, though gasoline stocks dipped by about 200,000 bbl down to 7.4 million bbl. As utilization holds strong, gas prices will continue to be cheaper for motorists in the Rockies region.

West Coast

Pump prices in the West Coast region are the highest in the nation, with all states in the region landing on the top 10 most expensive list today. Hawaii ($3.65) and California ($3.62) are the most expensive markets in the country. Washington ($3.19), Nevada ($3.12), Oregon ($3.04), Alaska ($2.96) and Arizona ($2.82) follow. Most state averages in the region have decreased on the week, with Alaska (-2 cents) seeing the largest decline. However, California (+5 cents) saw the largest increase.

The EIA’s recent report for the week ending on Aug. 23 showed that West Coast gasoline stocks decreased by 600,000 bbl. The total level is now 29.02 million bbl., which is more than 700,000 bbl higher than last year at this time. The higher level could help prices stabilize if there is an increase in gas demand in the region this week.

Oil market dynamics

At the close of Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX, WTI decreased by $1.61 to settle at $55.10. Crude oil prices saw some gains last week following EIA’s weekly report that showed crude oil stockpiles had decreased by 10 million bbl. However, worries about the impact of Hurricane Dorian drove crude oil prices down late last week. Closing out the week, crude oil futures fell 3% ahead of the hurricane’s landfall with fears that its impact could dampen demand. Market watchers will continue to track the progress of Hurricane Dorian as it strengthens throughout the week and batters Florida and the east coast.

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.

At $2.59, the national gas price average is poised to be potentially the cheapest Labor Day weekend average in three years. Today’s average is already nearly a quarter cheaper than during last year’s holiday ($2.83) and four cents cheaper than 2017’s Labor Day ($2.63).

“For Americans who bookend summer with road trips, they will find gas prices this coming weekend that are cheaper than this past Memorial Day and last year’s Labor Day holiday,” said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson. “At the start of the week, two-thirds of all states have gas price averages that are nearly a quarter cheaper than last year.”

While some states may see gas prices increase by a few pennies ahead of the holiday weekend, which isn’t atypical, any jumps will be short-term.

Quick Stats

  • The nation’s top 10 largest yearly decreases: Idaho (-43 cents), Louisiana (-38 cents), Indiana (-38 cents), Florida (-36 cents), Kentucky (-35 cents), Delaware (-35 cents), Utah (-35 cents), Mississippi (-35 cents), Alaska (-34 cents) and Oklahoma (-34 cents).
  • The nation’s top 10 most expensive markets: Hawaii ($3.64), California ($3.57), Washington ($3.21), Nevada ($3.13), Oregon ($3.05), Alaska ($3.00), Utah ($2.85), Idaho ($2.82), Arizona ($2.81) and New York ($2.79).

Mid-Atlantic and Northeast

Gas prices are cheaper across the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast states by as much as a nickel, but that large drop only happened for one state: North Carolina (-5 cents). New Jersey (-4 cents) saw the second largest decline followed by these four states with a three-cent weekly decrease: Virginia, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and Maryland. But the real savings for motorists in region is compared to this time last year – gas prices are at least 19 cents cheaper. Heading into Labor Day weekend last year, state gas price averages ranged from $2.59 – $3.03 whereas this year they are $2.29 – $2.79.

Despite a 1% dip in regional refinery utilization, gasoline stocks built by 781,000 bbl, per the Energy Information Administration (EIA). This is the fourth straight week that utilization fell, yet three straight weeks of stock increases. As previously reported, imports are easing concerns related to the decline in utilization due to the pending closure of a regional refinery. Stocks sit at a nearly 1 million bbl deficit compared to this time last year.

South and Southeast

Gas prices in the South and Southeast region have dipped to or below the $2.25/gallon mark for some states, which also tout the cheapest prices in the country today: Mississippi ($2.20), Louisiana ($2.20), Alabama ($2.23) and South Carolina ($2.23). More states in the region are likely to see averages this low in coming weeks. In fact, AAA expects by year-end that the region will again see $2/gallon retail prices. Currently, New Mexico ($2.48) and Georgia ($2.41) carry the most expensive averages in the region. 

On the week, all states in the region have gas prices that are cheaper by two cents to a nickel. Florida (-5 cents) saw the largest weekly decline.

The EIA reports that regional gasoline stocks drew by a little more than 1 million bbl. However, overall levels sit at a very healthy 83.2 million bbl and therefore gas prices are poised to continue to push cheaper.

Great Lakes and Central States

While Indiana (-10 cents) had the largest and only double-digit pump price decrease on the week in the region and the country, the majority of Great Lakes and Central states, saw pump prices push cheaper by as much as three cents. At $2.70, Michigan’s average increased two cents on the week and was one of only two states in the country to see an increase.

All states in the region are averaging a year-over-year pump savings of 20 cents or more except Illinois (-13 cents), which is at the lowest end of the price drop spectrum in the region.

With a 1 million bbl build, gasoline stocks increased for a third week and sit at their highest level since early April of this year, according to EIA data. Regional refinery utilization held strong at 99%, indicating that the region should expect cheaper gas prices next month with one stipulation being any refinery maintenance planned for this fall.

Rockies

On the week, gas prices declined 1 cent – 3 cents in the region. Colorado ($2.54) has the cheapest gas price average of all five states in the Rockies region while Utah ($2.85) and Idaho ($2.82) carry the most expensive. The latter two states rank as the 7th and 8th most expensive states in the country, however, they still land on the top 10 list for largest yearly changes, with differences of 43 and 35 cents less expensive, respectively.

Regional refinery utilization jumped back up to 100% in EIA’s data for the week ending Aug 16. Alongside the increase in utilization, stocks built by 200,000 to total 7.6 million bbl, the highest level since before Memorial Day. And with the end of summer tourism, stocks are likely to increase and push prices cheaper.

West Coast

Motorists in the West Coast region are paying the highest pump prices in the nation, with all states in the region landing on the top 10 most expensive list. Hawaii ($3.64) and California ($3.57) are the most expensive markets in the country. Other states in the region are seeing the following prices: Washington ($3.21), Nevada ($3.13), Oregon ($3.05), Alaska ($3.00) and Arizona ($2.81). State averages in the region have decreased on the week by as much as three cents, except in Arizona, which saw a three-cent increase since last Monday and is one of only two states in the country to see pump prices push more expensive.

The EIA’s report for the week ending on August 16 showed that West Coast gasoline stocks decreased slightly from 30.2 million bbl to 29.6 million bbl. Additionally, the report showed regional refinery utilization rose to 96.6% giving an indication of future production capability. If there is a supply disruption or increase in demand this week, pump prices in the region could increase moderately because of tighter stock levels.  

Oil market dynamics

At the close of Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX, WTI decreased by $1.15 to settle at $54.17. Crude prices strengthened after the EIA revealed that total domestic crude inventories fell by 2.7 million bbl. Then on Friday, crude oil prices took a downward turn as a result of continued trade tensions between the U.S. and China. Reuters reported that oil prices fell more than 2% on Friday after China unveiled retaliatory tariffs against $75 billion worth of U.S. goods. In response, President Trump tweeted that he would raise tariffs on $250 billion in Chinese goods from 25 to 30 percent on October 1. He also added that a tariff announced earlier this year and scheduled to go into effect on September 1 would now be raised to 15 percent. Market watchers will keep a close eye on U.S.-China trade talks and the impact increasing tariff costs could have on global crude oil demand. If the trade tension between the countries continues, crude prices will likely decline further.

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.

Cheap Crude Oil Paves Way for Significant Savings at the Pump

August 22nd, 2019 by AAA Public Affairs

AAA Forecasts National Gas Price Average to Land at $2.40 or Lower This Fall

WASHINGTON (August 22, 2019) – When filling-up at the pump this fall, the majority of U.S. motorists will find savings of potentially more than 25-cents/gallon compared to this summer. The national gas price average, which is already 15-cents cheaper than just five weeks ago, is poised to continue pushing less expensive due to several factors, including less expensive crude oil prices, the drop-off in gasoline demand after Labor Day and the move to winter-blend gasoline. AAA forecasts the national average to drop to $2.40 or lower this fall and offers motorists easy tips to maintain fuel efficiency throughout the year.

Additional Resources

“AAA predicts that fall gasoline prices will be significantly less expensive than this summer with motorists finding savings in every market across the country,” said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson. “Many factors are driving this decrease, but the low price of crude oil is chief among them.”

AAA forecasts crude prices to range between $50 and $60 per barrel this fall. That is a considerable drop from last fall when prices ranged between $60 and $75. Why so cheap? Current total domestic crude inventories sit at 438.9 million bbl, which is 31.5 million bbl higher than last year at this time. The continued glut of oil encouraged the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its partners to extend their 1.2 million b/d production reduction agreement through the end of the year. However, so far, reduced supply from OPEC and its partners has not led to a sustained higher price for crude.

As always, hurricane season has the potential to cause declining gas prices to shoot back up. This month, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicted that 2019’s Atlantic hurricane season is expected to be above normal, with 10 to 17 named storms, including five to nine hurricanes. The mere threat of a hurricane making landfall can shutter domestic crude production, leading to spikes in crude and gasoline prices. In 2017, Hurricane Harvey caused the national gas price average to jump 30-cents in a matter of days.

Fall Regional Outlooks

  • West Coast: This region is consistently home to the most expensive markets in the country, even though the crude refinery utilization rate in the region has grown to nearly 97 percent this summer. Growing stocks have helped to push prices lower across the region. Gas is $3.01 or more in all seven states in the region except Arizona. As fall brings lower demand for gasoline, AAA expects the West Coast to see gas prices drop, in light of higher stock levels, during the months ahead.
  • Great Lakes and Central States: Gasoline stocks and regional refinery utilization have seen mostly weekly increases, with the exception of a few, throughout the summer. Moving into the fall, refinery utilization will likely slow as demand hits a post-summer slump and refineries make the switch to winter-blend gasoline production and undergo planned maintenance. Prices should push cheaper, but that won’t stop the typically volatile region from being susceptible to sudden price shocks
  • Mid-Atlantic and Northeast: Total gas stocks in the region sit at 61 million bbl, which is 3 million bbl less than last year this time. Part of the year-over-year deficit stems from the pending closure of Philadelphia Energy Solutions (PES), the largest refinery on the East Coast. This would usually lead to a spike in gas prices. However, gasoline imports are easing supply concerns and keeping retail gasoline prices moving lower. Though any further supply disruptions could cause prices in the region to spike temporarily.
  • South and Southeast: This summer, the region has averaged a gasoline stock level of nearly 84 million bbl, with healthy regional refinery utilization rates, which have helped keep gas prices low. Motorists in the South and Southeast can expect to find savings at the pump this fall, potentially even under $2/gallon by year-end, barring any major hurricanes.
  • Rockies: Typically gas prices skew their highest for the Rockies region during summer tourism season. That was no different this year. However, prices were significantly cheaper than summer 2018 – Utah and Idaho’s averages priced under $3/gallon for all of July, compared to a high of $3.22 in 2018. As the tourist season winds down and demand slows, gas prices may see some fluctuation, but overall, motorists can expect prices to remain steady as gasoline stocks sit at their highest level – 7.5 million bbl – recorded by the EIA for the month of August.

Boost your Vehicle’s Fuel Efficiency

In addition to cheaper gas prices, there are other ways to save at the pump and boost your vehicle’s fuel efficiency this fall.

According to the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, Americans drive an average 11,498 miles per year, and annual per-vehicle gasoline use totals approximately 462 gallons. Poorly maintained vehicles are less efficient and use more fuel. To maintain fuel efficiency for your car, AAA recommends checking the owner’s manual for the recommended maintenance schedule, and keep the following in mind:

  • Perform required maintenance as specified. Keeping tires properly inflated, moving components adequately lubricated, and ignition and emission systems in good operating condition will help ensure maximum fuel efficiency and extend the life of your vehicle.
  • Change engine oil at the intervals indicated by the in-car maintenance reminder system or factory schedule. Use an “energy-conserving” oil that meets the vehicle manufacturer’s specifications.
  • Keep tires inflated at the proper pressure. Use the figures on the tire information decal on the driver’s door jamb — not the one molded into the tire’s sidewall. Under-inflated tires reduce fuel economy and can be a safety hazard.
  • Check the engine air filter at every oil change. A dirty filter won’t affect fuel economy on a modern fuel-injected car, but it will reduce engine performance.
  • Engine spark plugs must be in good condition. Some types last for 100,000 miles, but others need to be replaced more often.

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.

Demand at All-Time High, Slowing Pump Price Decreases

August 19th, 2019 by AAA Public Affairs

Summer may be ending, but gasoline demand is soaring to new heights. In its latest reading (for the week ending Aug. 9), the Energy Information Administration (EIA) recorded demand at 9.93 million b/d, the highest since the agency began recording data in 1991. As demand jumped, gasoline stocks fell by 1.4 million bbl and pump prices slowed their decline on the week.

“Pump prices continue to trend cheaper for most motorists across the country, though the rate at which they are declining slowed in the last week with a handful of states only seeing a nickel decline at the most,” said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson. “Demand recorded at a surprising all-time high, but it is expected to drop in the coming weeks as summer comes to an unofficial end.”

Today’s national average is $2.61, which is three cents cheaper than last week, 17-cents less than a month ago and 22-cents cheaper than a year ago. Nearly half of all gas stations in the country are selling gas for $2.50 or less.

Quick Stats

  • The nation’s top 10 largest weekly decreases are: North Carolina (-5 cents), Maryland (-5 cents), Georgia (-5 cents), Washington, D.C. (-5 cents), Texas (-5 cents), Missouri (-5 cents), South Carolina (-5 cents), Tennessee (-5 cents), New Jersey (-5 cents) and Virginia (-5 cents).
  • The nation’s top 10 least expensive markets are: Louisiana ($2.23), Mississippi ($2.24), South Carolina ($2.26), Alabama ($2.27), Arkansas ($2.29), Oklahoma ($2.30), Tennessee ($2.32), Texas ($2.33), Missouri ($2.34) and Kansas ($2.36).

South and Southeast

States in the South and Southeast carry among the cheapest gas prices in the country and some saw large declines on the week. Three state averages decreased by a nickel and land on the top10 list of states with the largest weekly decreases in the country: Georgia ($2.46), Texas ($2.33) and South Carolina ($2.26).

Motorists in the region are enjoying savings at the pump compared to last year at this time. Ten South and Southeast states have gas price averages that are a quarter or more less expensive: Louisiana (-37 cents), Florida (-35 cents), Mississippi (-31 cents), Oklahoma (-30 cents), Arkansas (-28 cents), South Carolina (-27 cents), Alabama (-27 cents), New Mexico (-27 cents), Texas (-27 cents) and Georgia (-26 cents).

The region’s refinery utilization rate (96%) and gasoline stock levels (84 million bbl) both held steady from the previous week according to the latest EIA data. Stock levels have been mostly increasing since mid-July and sit at a 4.2 million bbl surplus compared to this time last year. This likely means continued pump price decreases heading into September.

Great Lakes and Central States

The majority of motorists in the Great Lakes and Central states saw gas prices decrease on the week. However, Michigan (+6 cents) and Ohio (+2 cents) are the region’s and country’s outliers, being the only two states to see increases. This follows significant double-digit decreases each state saw the week prior: Ohio (-19 cents) and Michigan (-12 cents). However, this is not unordinary behavior in a region with high volatility.

All states in the region have gas price averages that are double-digits cheaper than a month ago. At a quarter or more cheaper, Illinois (-32 cents), Indiana (-26 cents) and Kentucky (-25 cents) tout the largest monthly decreases in the country.

Gasoline stocks remain at a healthy 50.1 million bbl. In the week ahead, gas prices may see little movement at the pump if gas stocks continue to hold steady. Regional refinery utilization remains strong with the EIA reporting a rate of 99% in their latest report. 

Mid-Atlantic and Northeast

In the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast region, gas prices are as much as a nickel cheaper than last week. North Carolina ($2.43), Maryland ($2.53), Washington, D.C. ($2.77), Tennessee ($2.32), New Jersey ($2.68) and Virginia ($2.37) rank among the top 10 states with the largest weekly decreases in the county and all saw gas prices drop by a nickel.

At the start of the workweek, state gas price averages in the region range between $2.81 and $2.32.

Regional gasoline stocks saw a nearly half a million bbl build despite refinery utilization declining for a third straight week, down 4% to 70%, per EIA data. Gas prices are decreasing among stable stocks and utilization thanks to imports backfilling supply since the largest refinery on the East Coast will be shutting down in the near future.

Rockies

Gas prices in the Rockies saw modest movement  – three cents or less declines – at the pump since last Monday: Idaho (-3 cents), Montana (-3 cent), Utah (-3 cents), Colorado (-2 cents) and Wyoming (-2 cents).

Compared to a month ago, gas prices are cheaper in the region, but not as significantly cheaper as much of the country is seeing. With nine-cent monthly differences, Idaho, Wyoming, Montana and Utah rank among the top 10 states with the smallest monthly decrease.

EIA data reports regional refinery utilization dropped 5%. However, as the region was carrying a rate more than 100% in the past few weeks, this move only drops the current rate to 98.7%. Stocks dipped slightly (45,000 bbl) to now measure at 7.4 million bbl. Thanks to a summer of strong refinery runs, stocks sit close to a 1 million bbl surplus.

West Coast

Pump prices in the West Coast region are the highest in the nation, with most states in the region landing on the top 10 most expensive list today. Hawaii ($3.64) and California ($3.59) are the most expensive markets in the country. Washington ($3.23), Nevada ($3.16), Oregon ($3.08) and Alaska ($3.03) follow. Arizona ($2.78) is the only state in the region to not be included in the list. Most state averages in the region have decreased on the week, with Nevada (-4 cents) seeing the largest decline.

The EIA’s recent report for the week ending on August 9 showed that West Coast gasoline stocks sit at 30.2 million bbl, falling by 1.5 million bbl from the previous week. The current level is approximately 100,000 bbl lower than last year at this time, which could cause prices to increase moderately if there is any disruption in supply or an increase in gas demand in the region this week.

Oil market dynamics

At the close of Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX, WTI increased by 40 cents to settle at $54.87. Crude prices rose at the end of last week after sustaining heavy losses for two days. The losses came as a result of continued market worries about crude demand slumping this fall as a result of the ongoing trade dispute between the United States and China, the world’s two largest oil consuming countries. If the trade dispute continues this week, crude prices may see further declines.

Additionally, last week OPEC trimmed its global oil demand forecast, citing a slowing economy. OPEC now calculates that this year’s crude demand growth will hit 1.1 million b/d on a year-over-year basis. The new rate reflects a slight dip of 40,000 b/d due to a slowdown in global demand trends in the first half of 2019.

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.

Domestic Gasoline Stocks Soar, Push Down Gas Prices

August 12th, 2019 by AAA Public Affairs

The national gas price average, $2.64, represents a seven-cent drop on the week as domestic gasoline stocks built by a surprising 4.4 million bbl, according to the Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) latest data. Contributing to the build was at least 1.2 million b/d of imports at U.S. ports. With the large bump, stocks now sit 235 million bbl – a U.S. stock level not seen in nearly five months (end of March).

 “On the week, nearly half of all states saw gas price averages decrease by at least a nickel,” said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson. “While gasoline demand increased week-over-week, it wasn’t enough to stay on pace with the huge jump in gasoline stocks. Therefore, pump prices continue to decline across the country.”

Today’s national gas price average is 13-cents less than a month ago and 21-cents cheaper than a year ago. 

Quick Stats

  • The nation’s top 10 largest weekly decreases are: Ohio (-19 cents), Indiana (-17 cents), Illinois (-12 cents), Michigan (-12 cents), Kentucky (-10 cents), Florida (-7 cents), Oklahoma (-7 cents), Louisiana (-6 cents), Missouri (-6 cents) and Georgia (-6 cents).
  • The nation’s top 10 least expensive markets are: Louisiana ($2.27), Mississippi ($2.28), South Carolina ($2.31), Alabama ($2.31), Arkansas ($2.32), Oklahoma ($2.34), Tennessee ($2.37), Texas ($2.38), Missouri ($2.39) and Kansas ($2.41).

Great Lakes and Central States

Motorists in five Great Lakes and Central states saw significant – double-digit – declines at the pump this week: Ohio (-19 cents), Indiana (-17 cents), Illinois (-12 cents), Michigan (-12 cents) and Kentucky (-10 cents). These states not only lead the top 10 list for weekly declines in the country, but also lead the largest monthly decline with savings as much as a quarter since this time in July: Illinois (-33 cents), Michigan (-32 cents), Ohio (-29 cents), Indiana (-30 cents) and Kentucky (-24 cents).

While all states in the region saw declines at the pump, they were not all significant. South Dakota saw the smallest decrease of just a penny. Gas prices in the region range from $2.79 in Illinois to $2.39 in Missouri.

Gas prices declined as gasoline stocks in the region jumped by 1.1 million bbl to bring total levels to 50 million bbl. The increase in stocks was supported by a 5% increase in regional refinery utilization, which was reported at 100% by the EIA. The Great Lakes and Central states are well-known for weekly volatility. While this week is starting with significant savings for much of the region, there is the potential for this coming week to bring increases.

South and Southeast

State gas price averages are 4 to 7 cents cheaper on the week across the South and Southeast region. Florida (-7 cents), Oklahoma (-7 cents), Louisiana (-6 cents) and Georgia (-6 cents) land on the top 10 list of largest weekly changes. Though, Texas and South Carolina also saw their state average decline six-cents on the week.

The latest weekly declines continue to position the South and Southeast as the region with the cheapest gas, with 7 of the 10 least expensive averages in the country: Louisiana ($2.27), Mississippi ($2.28), South Carolina ($2.31), Alabama ($2.31), Arkansas ($2.32), Oklahoma ($2.34) and Texas ($2.38).

The region saw a nearly 1 million bbl increase in gasoline stocks on the week and refinery utilization jumped 3.2%. At 84.7 million bbl, regional stocks now sit at their highest level since the end of May. Should stock levels and utilization remain at these high levels, motorists in the region can only expect to see gas prices continue to decline.

Mid-Atlantic and Northeast

New York ($2.84), Connecticut ($2.83), Washington, D.C. ($2.82) and Pennsylvania ($2.82) rank as the 9th – 12th most expensive gas price averages in the country. All Mid-Atlantic and Northeast states saw gas price averages decline on the week. However, pump price drops have been moderate (an average of four-cents) in comparison to other regions with double-digit weekly changes.

Regional gas prices are likely to continue decreasing, considering gasoline stocks rose by nearly 2 million bbl on the week. According to EIA reports, this was the largest build of any region. Much of the increase can be attributed to imports as regional refinery utilization saw a drop (2%) on the week.

Rockies

Gas prices are trending cheaper or stable after the prior week brought increases for a few states in the Rockies region. Colorado (-5 cents) saw the largest weekly decline, followed by Idaho and Montana – each with a two 2 cent drop – and Wyoming (-1 cent). Utah’s average remained stable at $2.91.

Year-over-year, most motorists in the region are seeing savings of at least 20 cents/gallon: Idaho (-34 cents), Colorado (-23 cents), Wyoming (-22 cents) and Utah (-21 cents). In Montana, gas prices are 16-cents cheaper compared to this time last year.

In the Rockies, regional refinery utilization sits at 103%. While this is the highest utilization in the country, the region carries the smallest stock level: 7.5 million bbl, according to EIA data. Motorists are likely to see gas prices continue to trend cheaper through August.

West Coast

Motorists in the West Coast region are paying the highest pump prices in the nation, with most states in the region landing on the top 10 most expensive list today. Hawaii ($3.64) and California ($3.62) are the most expensive markets in the country. Washington ($3.25), Nevada ($3.20), Oregon ($3.10) and Alaska ($3.06) follow. Arizona ($2.77) is the only state in the region to fall off the list. Most state averages in the region have decreased on the week, with California (-5 cents) seeing the largest decline.

The EIA’s recent report for the week ending on August 2 showed that West Coast gasoline stocks sit at 31.7 million bbl, growing by approximately 500,000 bbl from the previous week. The current level is nearly 1.3 million bbl higher than last year at this time, which could help prices stabilize if there is any disruption in supply or an increase in gas demand in the region this week.

 Oil market dynamics

At the close of Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX, WTI increased by a $1.96 to settle at $54.50. Crude prices increased last week after reports emerged that OPEC is considering additional crude production cuts. In July, the cartel announced that it and its partners would extend the 1.2 million b/d crude production reduction agreement for an additional nine months. More details about the potential production cuts will likely be discussed at OPEC’s next meeting on December 5-6 in Vienna. Crude prices could increase this week amid further indications that global crude supply will tighten this fall.

The increase in crude prices last week occurred despite the International Energy Agency (IEA) revealing that global oil demand from May 2018 to January 2019 grew at its slowest rate since 2008. As a result, IEA reduced its global crude demand growth forecasts for 2019 and 2020 to 1.1 million and 1.3 million bpd respectively.

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.

 

On the week, the average national gas price dropped by two cents to $2.71. This is less expensive than a week, a month (-4 cent) and a year (-15 cents) ago. Prices are cheaper as demand saw a small dip on the week, even though overall demand remains robust for the summer. 

“While gas prices continue to drop, the rate at which they are decreasing has slowed,” said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson. “On the week, most states saw cheaper pump prices of only a few pennies and motorists can expect this trend to continue into early August.”

Today, motorists can find gas for $2.75 or less at 65% of gas stations across the country. 

Quick Stats

• The nation’s top 10 largest monthly decreases are: Florida (-17 cents), Alaska (-17 cents), Michigan (-14 cents), Illinois (-13 cents), Delaware (-12 cents), California (-10 cents), Kentucky (-9 cents), Arizona (-9 cents), Colorado (-9 cents) and Idaho (-9 cents).

• The nation’s top 10 least expensive markets are: Louisiana ($2.33), Mississippi ($2.33), Alabama ($2.35), Arkansas ($2.37), South Carolina ($2.37), Oklahoma ($2.41), Tennessee ($2.43), Texas ($2.44), Missouri ($2.45) and Kansas ($2.46).

South and Southeast

Motorists in the South and Southeast saw some of the largest declines at the pump and all states in the region have cheaper gas prices on the week. In fact, four states land on the top 10 list of largest weekly changes: Florida (-7 cents), Georgia (-4 cents), Texas (-4 cents) and South Carolina (-3 cents). This is the second week in a row that Florida and South Carolina have appeared on the top 10 weekly changes list.

In the region, motorists are seeing savings year-over-year ranging from 19 to 28 cents cheaper. Those savings are likely to only increase as gas prices push less expensive moving into August.

Regional refinery utilization jumped to 93.5% and gasoline stocks saw a 857,000 bbl build, according to Energy Information Administration (EIA) data for the week ending Jul. 26. This was the only region in the country to see stocks increase for the EIA’s latest reporting period. Total stocks measure at 83.8 million bbl which is a 5.5 million bbl surplus compared to levels at the end of July. The region’s strong measurement of gasoline stocks is helping to push gas prices cheaper and this trend should continue as August typically yields high regional utilization and stock levels for the region.

Great Lakes and Central States

Ohio (+4 cents) and Indiana (+1 cent) were two of only five states in the country to see gas prices increase on the week. All other states in the Great Lakes and Central states region saw prices decrease on the week with Michigan (-10 cents) and Illinois (-9 cents) seeing the largest declines in the region and the country.

Pump prices are also trending cheaper compared to one month ago, with motorists in Michigan (-14 cents) seeing the largest monthly decrease in the region. Other Great Lakes and Central states with large month-over-month changes: Illinois (-13 cents), Kentucky (+9 cents) and Indiana (-6 cents). North Dakota (+6 cents) is this only state in the region with more expensive gas prices compared to a month ago.

For a second week, gasoline inventories dipped, and the draw was substantial at nearly one million bbl. The EIA also reports regional utilization declined from 99% to 95%. While pump prices pushed cheaper on the week, the lower stock and utilization levels could yield some price fluctuation in the week ahead.

Mid-Atlantic and Northeast

Gas prices are as much as three cents cheaper on the week for motorists in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast states, though a small number of states – fewer than five – saw prices remain stable on the week. Tennessee saw the largest decline.

The region is one of two with states on both the top 10 most and least expensive averages list in the country this week. At $2.88, Washington, D.C. ranks as the 10th most expensive and Tennessee ($2.43) ranks as the 7th least expensive state average.

The EIA reports gasoline stocks held on the week at the 59 million bbl mark while regional refinery utilization fell a percentage point to 76%. Analysts anticipate gasoline stocks to increase in August due to gasoline imports, which would assist in keeping gas prices cheaper in the coming weeks.

Rockies

For the first time in a few months, motorists in Utah (+6 cents), Wyoming (+2 cents) and Montana (+1 cent) are paying more to fill-up. Meanwhile, Colorado (-2 cents) and Idaho (-1 cent) have slightly cheaper gas prices. With the price fluctuations, Utah ($2.91) and Idaho ($2.89) rank, respectively, as the eight and ninth most expensive gas averages in the country this week.

Regional refinery utilization remains above 100% for a second week while gasoline stocks saw a small draw to drop totals to 7.4 million bbl. This poises the region for cheaper gas prices, especially as demand is likely to drop along with the end of peak tourism season in the region.

West Coast

Pump prices in the West Coast region are the highest in the nation, with most states in the region landing on the top 10 most expensive list today. California ($3.67) and Hawaii ($3.64) are the most expensive markets in the country. Washington ($3.28), Nevada ($3.23), Oregon ($3.13) and Alaska ($3.08) follow. Arizona ($2.77) is the only state in the region to fall off the list. Most state averages in the region have decreased on the week, with Alaska (-5 cents) seeing the largest decline.

The EIA’s recent report for the week ending on July 26 showed that West Coast gasoline stocks sit at 32.3 million bbl, growing by approximately 300,000 bbl from the previous week. The current level is nearly 150,000 bbl higher than last year at this time, which could help prices stabilize if there is any disruption in supply or gas demand increases in the region this week.

 Oil market dynamics

At the close of Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX, WTI increased by $1.71 to settle at $55.66. Crude prices mostly decreased last week after President Trump announced new tariffs on imports from China, furthering a trade war between the world’s two largest economies and oil consumers. Market observers are concerned that increasing tariff costs will likely reduce global demand for crude oil. If the trade tensions between the countries continue to increase this week, crude prices will likely decline further.

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.

Pump Prices Push Cheaper for Another Week

July 29th, 2019 by AAA Public Affairs

Today’s national average is $2.73. While this is two cents more expensive than on the same day last month, it is three cents cheaper than last week and 12-cents less expensive than a year ago.

“Gas prices this month are on average a dime less expensive than in July 2018. These less expensive gas prices have encouraged summer road trips as evidenced by robust demand numbers since May,” said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson. “Right now, pump prices are poised to push even cheaper going into August.”

On the week, every state but Michigan saw gas prices trend less expensive. The majority of the top 10 states with the largest weekly declines saw gas prices move a nickel cheaper since last Monday.

Quick Stats

  • The nation’s top 10 largest weekly decreases are: Florida (-9 cents), Kentucky (-8 cents), Missouri (-5 cents), Iowa (-5 cents), Delaware (-5 cents), Kansas (-5 cents), South Carolina (-5 cents), Tennessee (-5 cents), Alaska (-5 cents) and Louisiana (-4 cents).
  • The nation’s top 10 least expensive markets are: Mississippi ($2.35), Louisiana ($2.36), Alabama ($2.38), Arkansas ($2.39), South Carolina ($2.40), Oklahoma ($2.42), Tennessee ($2.46), Texas ($2.48), Virginia ($2.48) and Kansas ($2.48).

South and Southeast

Gas prices are pushing cheaper across the South and Southeast. On the week, state averages are three to nine cents less: Florida (-9 cents) is seeing the largest decline followed by South Carolina (-5 cents) and Louisiana (-4 cents). These three states land on the top 10 list for the largest weekly decreases in the country.

New Mexico ($2.56) is the only state in the South and Southeast region to see cheaper gas prices on the week (-3 cents), month (-3 cents) and year (-18 cents). All other states in the region have cheaper averages on the week and the year. On the month, gas prices are as much as eight cents more expensive in these other states.

Energy Information Administration (EIA) data released last week shows that regional refinery utilization dropped for a second week, now down to 91%. Stocks dipped along with utilization, but overall levels remain close to the 83 million bbl mark. If utilization and stock levels continue to decline, the region could be poised to see some fluctuation in prices at the pump next month, especially as summer travel begins to slow and the school year begins.

 Great Lakes and Central States

With a four-cent increase, Michigan ($2.84) is the only state in the country to see gas prices increase on the week. In fact, four Great Lakes and Central states land on the top 10 list for largest weekly decreases in the country: Kentucky (-8 cents), Missouri (-5 cents), Iowa (-5 cents) and Kansas (-5 cents). In the region, gas prices range from $3.00 to $2.48.

Gas prices are declining as the region sees gasoline inventories remain robust at 50 million bbl and regional refinery utilization jumps to 99% – one of the highest rates in the country, per EIA data. While the region often sees volatility from week-to-week, should stock levels and utilization remain high, motorists can expect cheaper or stable gas prices in August.

Mid-Atlantic and Northeast

Across the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast states, gas prices are cheaper or stable on the week. With a nickel decrease, both Delaware ($2.49) and Tennessee ($2.46) saw the largest pump price declines.

This week, Delaware holds the title for the state with not only the largest weekly decrease in the region but the largest year-over-year decline (-26 cents) and monthly change (-8 cents) too.

Gasoline stocks saw a build of just under a half a million bbl as regional refinery utilization jumped from 69% to 77%. The increasing utilization numbers are positive considering the recent fire and pending subsequent closure of the Philadelphia Energy Solutions (PES) refinery in Philadelphia, which was the largest refinery on the East Coast. If utilization continues this positive trend, gas prices would likely follow suit pushing cheaper. However, August can tend to see higher volumes in terms of miles traveled in the region, which could cause some moderate spikes throughout the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast states next month. 

Rockies

Idaho ($2.90), Utah ($2.85) and Montana ($2.79) rank among the top 15 most expensive state gas price averages in the country, despite consistent weekly declines this summer. On the week, prices pushed cheaper for all states by one to three cents. Colorado ($2.64) and Wyoming ($2.72) saw the largest drop at the pump. 

While the majority of motorists in the country are not seeing cheaper gas prices month-over-month, that is not the case in the Rockies. Motorists are seeing mostly significantly less expensive prices compared to end of June: Utah (-14 cents), (Idaho (-11 cents), Colorado (-8 cents) and Wyoming (-7 cents). Motorists in Montana are only seeing a penny difference.

Regional refinery utilization blew past the 100% mark to hit 103%, according to the latest EIA report. With the latest build, gasoline stocks sit at 7.5 million bbl. This combination will continue to push prices cheaper for the region.

West Coast

Motorists in the West Coast region are paying the highest pump prices in the nation, with most states in the region landing on the top 10 most expensive list today. California ($3.69) and Hawaii ($3.64) are the most expensive markets in the country. Washington ($3.29), Nevada ($3.25), Alaska ($3.13) and Oregon ($3.15) follow. Arizona ($2.78) is the only state in the region to fall off the list. Most state averages in the region have decreased on the week, with Alaska (-5 cents) seeing the largest decline.

The EIA’s recent report for the week ending on July 19 showed that West Coast gasoline stocks sit at 32 million bbl, remaining unchanged from the previous week. The current level is almost 1.5 million bbl higher than last year at this time, which could help prices stabilize if there is any disruption in supply or gas demand increases in the region this week.

 Oil market dynamics

At the close of Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX, WTI increased by 18 cents to settle at $56.20. Crude prices mostly increased last week after EIA’s weekly report showed that total domestic crude inventories fell by 10.8 million bbl. With OPEC continuing to reduce crude production, tighter domestic crude supplies could cause prices to continue to increase if demand tightens. Unresolved tension in the Middle East also contributed to price increases last week. Iran has not released the U.K.-flagged oil tanker it captured in the Strait of Hormuz. In response, the British Royal Navy announced that it would escort U.K.-flagged vessels in the region to protect against future attacks. If tensions continue to mount this week, crude prices will likely continue their ascent.

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.

 

Price Increases at the Pump Slowing Across the Country

July 22nd, 2019 by AAA Public Affairs

On the week, all but eight states saw gas price averages push cheaper or remain stable. At $2.76, the national gas price average is three cents less expensive than last Monday. This is the first time in four weeks that the national average has seen a weekly decline.

“Gasoline stocks remain robust amid a recent dip in demand, which could be one reason we are seeing pump prices starting to roll back,” said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson. “It is too soon to know if this is a long-term trend, but it is certainly a welcome relief for motorists.”

Today’s average is a dime more expensive than a month ago, but eight cents cheaper than a year ago.

Quick Stats

  • The nation’s top 10 largest weekly changes are: Indiana (-15 cents), Michigan (-12 cents), Illinois (-12 cents), Ohio (-11 cents), Kentucky (-5 cents), Delaware (-5 cents), Florida (+4 cents), West Virginia (+4 cents), Nebraska (-4 cents) and California (-3 cents).
  • The nation’s top 10 least expensive markets are: Mississippi ($2.39), Louisiana ($2.41), Alabama ($2.41), Arkansas ($2.43), South Carolina ($2.46), Oklahoma ($2.48), Tennessee ($2.52), Virginia ($2.52), Texas ($2.53) and Kansas ($2.54).

Great Lakes and Central States

Regional volatility continues to be a theme among the Great Lakes and Central States despite strong regional refinery utilization and strong gasoline stocks. On the week, Indiana (-15 cents), Michigan (-12 cents), Illinois (-12 cents) and Ohio (-11 cents) rank as the top four states in the country with the largest declines at the pump and the only to see double-digit dips. Kentucky (-5 cents) and Nebraska (-4 cents) round out the top 10 largest weekly changes list in the region. While the past seven days brought mostly declines or stability at the pump for the majority of the region, two states saw slight price jumps: North Dakota (+2 cents) and Kansas (+1 cents).

For a third week, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) reports regional refinery utilization at 97% and a small build – 328,000 bbl – in gasoline stocks. Total stocks measure at 50 million bbl, which is about 2.2 million bbl below levels a year ago. This year-over-year deficit could be contributing to some of the fluctuation in pump prices across the region. However, the overall stock level is strong and keeping most fluctuation moderate.

Mid-Atlantic and Northeast

States in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast region saw pump prices push cheaper or more expensive by as much as a nickel. Two states land on the top 10 list for largest weekly changes: Delaware (-5 cents) and West Virginia (+4 cents).

While two states in the region land on the top 10 most expensive list – Pennsylvania ($2.92) and Connecticut ($2.89) – all state averages are under $3/gallon. While all state averages are cheaper than a year ago they are also more expensive – by as much as 17 cents – than a month ago.

The latest EIA data reports regional refinery utilization at a steady 69%, and despite the low utilization, stocks built by a little more than 250,000 bbl bringing levels to 59.5 million bbl. The last two weeks of gasoline stock builds, though small, are helping to keep gas prices mostly stable in the region.  

 

South and Southeast

Florida (+4 cents) and Texas (+2 cents) were the only states in the region to see jumps at the pump this week. All other states in the South and Southeast region saw pump prices trend cheaper by as much as three cents or remain stable.

Gas prices in the region rank among the top 21 cheapest in the country, with state averages ranging from $2.38 to $2.66. Within the region, motorists can find gas for $2.50 or less at 90% or more of gas stations in Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana and Mississippi.

Despite Hurricane Barry closing down some operations the week prior, the region added 2 million bbl of gasoline stocks to total 83.8 million bbl. EIA data also shows that regional refinery utilization dropped by a percentage point to 95%. The strong utilization and stock levels poise the region to see gas prices potentially decrease further at the pump in the coming week.

Rockies

State gas prices in the Rockies are cheaper or stable on the week, month and year with the exception of Montana. At 99%, the region holds the strongest refinery utilization rate in the country. This high rate combined with gasoline stocks at 7.4 million bbl continue to yield cheaper gas prices week-after-week for motorists in the region.

State Weekly Change Monthly Change Yearly Change
Utah ($2.87) -3 cents -18 cents -14 cents
Idaho ($2.92) -2 cents -14 cents -20 cents
Colorado ($2.67) -2 cents -7 cents -14 cents
Wyoming ($2.75) No change -6 cents -20 cents
Montana ($2.80) +1 cent -2 cents -13 cents

 

West Coast

Pump prices in the West Coast region are the highest in the nation, with most states in the region landing on the top 10 most expensive list today. California ($3.71) and Hawaii ($3.65) are the most expensive markets in the country. Washington ($3.31), Nevada ($3.27), Alaska ($3.18) and Oregon ($3.17) follow. Arizona ($2.80) is the only state in the region to fall off the list. Most state averages in the region have decreased on the week, with California, Arizona, Alaska and Oregon seeing the largest declines at three cents each.

The EIA’s recent report for the week ending on July 12 showed that West Coast gasoline stocks grew by approximately 1 million bbl from the previous week and sit at 32 million bbl. The current level is almost 2 million bbl higher than last year at this time, which could help prices stabilize if there is any disruption in supply or gas demand surges in the region this week.

Oil market dynamics

At the close of Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX, WTI increased by 33 cents to settle at $55.63. Crude prices mostly declined last week after the International Energy Agency (IEA) announced that it does not expect oil prices to rise significantly because demand is slowing and there is a glut in global crude markets. The IEA is reducing its 2019 oil demand growth forecast to 1.1 million barrels per day (bpd) from 1.2 million bpd due to a slowing global economy amid the continuing U.S.-China trade dispute. Concerns over the current excess of oil in the crude market overshadowed concerns of increasing tension in the Middle East, following the United States announcing on Thursday that a U.S. Navy ship had “destroyed” an Iranian drone in the Strait of Hormuz. However, Iran captured a British-flagged oil tanker in the region late on Friday, dramatically escalating tensions. If tension continues to mount, oil prices could spike this week in response to concerns that global supply flows may be disrupted.

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.

National Gas Price Average Jumps Eight Cents in Two Weeks

July 15th, 2019 by AAA Public Affairs

The national gas price average is $2.79, which is an eight-cent increase since the beginning of July. Gas prices have increased amid more expensive crude oil prices, robust demand and decreasing gasoline stocks.

Since last Monday, 18 states have seen their gas price averages increase by at least a nickel. Hurricane Barry, which made landfall in Louisiana this past weekend, seems to have had little impact on the national average.

“Gas prices continue to increase for the majority of motorists east of the Mississippi,  while those filling up in the West Coast and Rockies regions are seeing a bit of a reprieve at the pump,” said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson. “While the national average is up, only seven states have gas price averages of $3/gallon or more. And notably, compared to the same time last year, the average is still eight cents cheaper.”

Today’s average is four cents more than last week and a dime more expensive compared to a month ago.

Quick Stats

  • The nation’s top 10 least expensive markets are: Mississippi ($2.40), Alabama ($2.42), Louisiana ($2.43), Arkansas ($2.43), South Carolina ($2.48), Oklahoma ($2.50), Texas ($2.50), Virginia ($2.51), Kansas ($2.52) and Tennessee ($2.53).
  • The nation’s top 10 largest weekly increases are: Indiana (+15 cents), Illinois (+14 cents), Missouri (+10 cents), Ohio (+10 cents), Oklahoma (+9 cents), Michigan (+8 cents), Kentucky (+8 cents), Nebraska (+7 cents), South Carolina (+7 cents) and Georgia (+7 cents).

Great Lakes and Central States

Seven of the top 10 states with the largest weekly increase in the country hail from the Great Lakes and Central states region: Indiana (+15 cents), Illinois (+14 cents), Missouri (+10 cents), Ohio (+10 cents), Michigan (+8 cents cents), Kentucky (+8 cents) and Nebraska (+7 cents). Among all states in the region, Kansas (+3 cents) saw the smallest jump in gas prices.

As regional refinery utilization holds strong at 97%, gasoline stocks stay intact at 49 million bbl, according to Energy Information Administration (EIA) data. This has helped to keep gas price increases moderate (less than a nickel) for most of the region, which is accustomed to volatility throughout the year.

 South and Southeast

Gas prices jumped nearly a dime in the region with motorists in Oklahoma (+9 cents), South Carolina (+7 cents) and Georgia (+7 cents) seeing the largest increase. Meanwhile, Florida (-4 cents) was one of the only states east of the Mississippi to see gas prices decrease.   

Hurricane Barry had minimal impact on gas prices in the region. Louisiana’s state average increased only four-cents on the week, which is not atypical following a storm. The one refinery Barry forced to shut down is now in the restart process and other refineries that were in the storm’s path report few, if any, impacts on operations.

In EIA’s latest data, regional refinery utilization inches closer to 97%. Stocks took a significant 3 million bbl draw on the week. That drops total stocks to 81 million bbl, which is a low not seen in the region in eight weeks. This news, combined with Barry’s impact on regional rigs, means that another draw could be likely in the EIA’s next weekly reports and pump prices are likely to see fluctuations through the end of the month.

Mid-Atlantic and Northeast

States in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast region are experiencing some of the lowest volatility in gas prices in the country, which may seem surprising considering the low utilization rates and gasoline stock levels. On the week, the majority of states saw gas price increases of three cents or less. The outliers were: Tennessee (+7 cents), Washington, D.C. (+5 cents), Virginia (+4 cents) and Connecticut (+4 cents). Surprisingly, Delaware saw a decrease, albeit it a penny.

Regional refinery utilization is now down to 69%. However, the EIA reports the region saw a build of 714,000 bbl in gasoline stocks to total levels at 59.2 million bbl. The build was a surprise, but good news for the region and will help to keep gas price volatility in check.

Rockies

With a four-cent price drop, Utah saw one of the largest decreases in the country on the week. Other states in the region saw pump price decreases of a few pennies, which keeps gas price averages all under $3/gal: Idaho ($2.94), Utah ($2.70) Montana ($2.79), Wyoming ($2.75) and Colorado ($2.69).

The region holds one of the strongest refinery utilization rates (97%) in the country which is helping to push prices cheaper this summer. On the week, gasoline stocks saw a small draw of 200,000 bbl to lower total stocks to 7.4 million bbl, per EIA data. Motorists are likely to see gas prices continue to sell under $3/gal through the end of summer in the region.

West Coast

Motorists in the West Coast region are paying the highest pump prices in the nation, with most states in the region landing on the top 10 most expensive list today. California ($3.74) and Hawaii ($3.64) are the most expensive markets in the country. Washington ($3.33), Nevada ($3.28), Alaska ($3.21) and Oregon ($3.20) follow. Arizona ($2.83) is the only state in the region to fall off the list. Of note, most state averages in the region have decreased on the week, with California and Arizona seeing the largest declines at two cents each.

The EIA’s recent report for the week ending on July 5 showed that West Coast gasoline stocks grew by approximately 500,000 bbl from the previous week and sit at 31 million bbl. The current level is about 200,000 bbl higher than last year at this time, which could help prices stabilize if there is any disruption in supply or gas demand surges in the region this week.

 Oil market dynamics

At the close of Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX, WTI increased by one cent to settle at $60.21. Crude prices increased last week as the market continues to worry about tensions in the Middle East, which could restrict global oil supply. If those concerns continue into this week, crude prices will likely continue to increase. Additionally, Hurricane Barry, temporarily halted 60 percent of all crude production in the Gulf of Mexico last week. As the storm subsides and floodwaters diminish, crude production will resume. As a result, crude stocks may tighten in the region and could cause prices to increase modestly.

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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Media: Find and Download AAA Videos and B Roll.