The national average for a gallon of gas dipped a bit following the long Labor Day weekend, falling a penny since last week to $3.80. The decrease comes despite a recent uptick in the price of oil, the primary ingredient in gasoline. Today’s national average of $3.80 is two cents less than a month ago but five cents higher than a year ago.
“There have been some jumps in wholesale gasoline prices – also reflected in higher prices at the gas pumps – across the Central Plains in the last couple of days,” says Rylie Mansuetti, spokesperson for AAA Oklahoma. “Reports indicate that regular refinery maintenance and a few refinery repairs requiring outages are playing a role in the increases. It remains to be seen how much of a price increase we will see at the pumps or how long they may last. But there is no indication that the situation will be anything but temporary.”
Although global crude oil prices – which make up at least half of the price of a gallon of gasoline at the pump – have been higher recently, and domestic gasoline demand has been strong throughout the summer vacation-driving season, we are entering a fall period that typically sees lower gas demand. In Oklahoma, the gas average is $3.57 today, up seven cents in the last week and 24 cents higher than one year ago.
According to new data from the Energy Information Administration (EIA), gas demand increased from 9.07 to 9.32 million barrels per day last week. Meanwhile, total domestic gasoline stocks dropped from 217.4 to 214.7 million barrels. Rising oil prices, higher gas demand, and tighter supply may push pump prices higher.
At the close of today’s formal trading session, WTI closed at $87.57, posting a more than 2% weekly gain. Tighter crude supplies are pushing oil prices higher, in addition to recent hurricane season production disruptions.
AAA has a variety of resources to help motorists save on fuel:
- Fuel Price Finder (http://www.AAA.com/fuelfinder) locates the lowest fuel price in your area.
- AAA Gas Cost Calculator (http://gasprices.aaa.com/aaa-gas-cost-calculator/) helps budget travel expenses.
- TripTik Mobile (http://www.aaa.com/mobile) plots fuel prices along your travel route.