AAA: Gas prices back up with higher demand post-holidays

gas pricesHigh travel volumes over the holidays drove gas prices up this week locally and nationally. In the first week of 2018, motorists in Virginia are noticing slight increases in some areas compared to one week ago.

The first two months of the year are typically the times of year that gasoline demand is at its weakest, and with builds in gasoline stock anticipated next week, prices will have a hard time going much higher in the short term.

Today’s national gas price average is $2.49, which unchanged in the last week, up a penny in the last month and 12 cents higher than this time last year.

“Although prices at the pump shot up over the holidays, now that the holiday season is in the rearview mirror, motorists can expect gas prices to trend cheaper this month as we are likely to see a significant drop in gasoline demand,” said Tammy Arnette, Senior Public Affairs Specialist for AAA Mid-Atlantic.

At the close of NYMEX trading Friday, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil settled at $61.44 per barrel, $1.02 higher than the previous week. Crude oil prices ended 2017 at the highest levels since 2013. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil prices averaged $51 per barrel in 2017, up $7 per barrel from the 2016 average, and ended the year at $60 per barrel, $6 higher than at the end of 2016. Moving into 2018, prices are expected to continue rising as OPEC’s production reduction agreement will remain in place for the entirety of 2018.

om Kloza, global head of energy analysis for the Oil Price Information Service (OPIS), believes the average price for a gallon of regular gas could rise by as much as 50 cents between the dead of winter and the spring/summer driving season thanks to increased demand and refinery maintenance that was put off last year due to Hurricane Harvey in the southern portion of the country.

AAA has a variety of resources to help motorists save on fuel:

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