GILLETTE, Wyo. — Gas prices across the nation fell this week for the first time in a month, coming down 5.4 cents, according to price tracker GasBuddy. Campbell County’s average price also fell this week, down 12 cents from a week ago.
“After a sharp rise in the national average over the last few weeks, we’ve seen an abrupt, yet expected decline as refinery issues have eased in the West and Great Lakes, overpowering some increases elsewhere. Though at the same time, diesel prices have soared,” said Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy.
Despite the recent drop, the national average is up 20.6 cents from a month ago and 56.6 cents per gallon higher than a year ago, GasBuddy data shows. The national average price of diesel has risen 18.7 cents in the last week and stands at $5.26 per gallon.
AAA reported the national average price for a gallon of regular gasoline at $3.88 per gallon, down 3 cents from a week ago, and placed Wyoming’s average the same at $3.88, down 4 cents from last week. Campbell County’s average gas price is the second cheapest in the state at $3.59 per gallon, according to AAA.
The cheapest price offered by a Campbell County gas station on Monday is $3.43 at Cenex stations at 2063 S. Garner Lake Road and 1206 S. Douglas Highway, followed by $3.53 at Maverik, 1616 E. Highway 14-16, and M.G. Oil Co., 502 El Camino Road, according to GasBuddy reports.
“We’ll see a continued sharp drop in gas prices on the West Coast, including areas like Las Vegas and Phoenix, which are supplied by refiners in California, as refinery outages have been addressed. The Great Lakes will see prices drift lower as BP’s Whiting refinery is soon to complete maintenance,” De Haan said. “In addition, oil prices have cooled off slightly after OPEC+’s decision to cut production, and that should slow increases elsewhere. Diesel and heating oil prices are likely to continue to rise as extremely low inventories of middle of the barrel products like these two push prices higher.”
Also included in GasBuddy’s report Monday:
For the second straight week after OPEC+’s decision to trim oil production quotas, oil prices have remained under selling pressure. In early trade, a barrel of West Texas Intermediate crude oil was down 79 cents to $84.82 per barrel, falling from last Monday’s $92.16 fetch. Brent crude was also seeing losses, down 52 cents in early Monday trade to $91.11 per barrel, off from last Monday’s $97.32 start. Recession fears continue to mount as well as worse than expected jobs data, pushing the world’s largest economy to the brink of a more prolonged slowdown, pushing oil lower. On the other side, China slowly re-opening their economy is limiting the potential downside to oil.
According to Baker Hughes, last week’s U.S. rig count was up by 7 rigs to 769, and was 226 rigs higher than a year ago. The Canadian rig count was up 1 rig to 216, and was 48 rigs higher than a year ago.
OIL AND REFINED PRODUCTS
According to data from the Energy Information Administration, oil supplies last week surged nearly 10 million barrels as the SPR fell by some 7.7 million barrels to continued multi-decade lows. Refined products inventories were mixed, with gasoline inventories up 2 million barrels, or some 8% below the five year average for this time of year, while distillate inventories fell 4.9 million barrels and stand some 23% below the five year average for this time of year, to extremely low levels. Refinery utilization fell 1.4% last week to just under 90%, while gasoline production fell to 9.2 million barrels per day and distillate production fell to 4.9 million barrels. Implied gasoline demand, which had surged last week well above GasBuddy indicators, plunged nearly 1.2 million barrels per day to 8.28 million. Total petroleum inventories, including the SPR, now stand down nearly 12% from a year ago.
According to GasBuddy demand data driven by its Pay with GasBuddy card, U.S. retail gasoline demand rose last week (Sun-Sat) by 0.6%. Broken down by PADD region, demand rose 2.9% in PADD 1, rose 1.7% in PADD 2, fell 3.3% in PADD 3, fell 4.6% in PADD 4 and fell 1.8% in PADD 5.
GAS PRICE TRENDS
The most common U.S. gas price encountered by motorists stood at $3.39 per gallon, up 10 cents versus last week, followed by $3.49, $3.59, $3.29 and $3.99 rounding out the top five most common prices.
The states with the lowest average prices: Georgia ($3.22), Texas ($3.26) and Mississippi ($3.31).
The states with the highest average prices: California ($5.97), Alaska ($5.41) and Oregon ($5.30).