AAA: Gas prices continue downward trend

gas pricesGas prices have spent more than 30 consecutive days below $2 per gallon and could head lower still as reduced seasonal demand and falling crude oil costs combine to send pump prices to the lowest mark in six years.

Today’s average price of $1.80 per gallon is down by three cents on the week, 20 cents on the month and 25 cents on the year.

WTI crude closed out Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX up $1.43, settling at $33.62 per barrel. The record-breaking blizzard which hit the Mid-Atlantic last weekend delivered more than two feet of snow in many areas. Severe weather can make it difficult for refiners to produce gasoline and can create hurdles for getting the product to market. However, storms also keep drivers off of roads, which can limit demand.

“Gasoline prices tend to drop during January and February as demand shrinks to its lowest levels,” said Martha Meade, Manager of Public and Government Affairs for AAA Mid-Atlantic. “Demand was even lower this past week as millions became stranded after the record-breaking snow storm that blanketed the Northeast.”

The Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) latest report finds that both crude oil and gasoline inventories have increased. On the East coast, gasoline inventories are up by 2.9 million barrels in comparison to last year, while oil inventories are more than 21 percent higher today than they were at this time last year.

 

CURRENT AND PAST GAS PRICE AVERAGES

Regular Unleaded Gasoline (*indicates record high)

 

Today
1/31/16

Week Ago
1/24/16

Year Ago
1/31/15

National

$1.80

$1.83

$2.05

Virginia

$1.66

$1.69

$1.95

Charlottesville

$1.70

$1.73

$1.95

Norfolk Area

$1.59

$1.62

$2.00

Richmond

$1.61

$1.64

$1.88

Roanoke

$1.69

$1.73

$1.92

Crude Oil

$33.62
per barrel
(Friday 1/29/16 close)

$32.19
per barrel
(Friday 1/22/16 close)

$58.56
per barrel
(1/30/15)

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