Gas prices in south central Ohio fell by eight cents this week to $2.198 per gallon, according to AAA East Central’s Gas Price Report.
On the National Front
Slowly, but steadily, national gas prices have dropped for seven consecutive days. Today’s national average price for regular unleaded gasoline is $2.35 per gallon, which is four cents less than one week and one month ago, but 14 cents more than the same date last year. Last week, 46 states saw prices drop – some by at least 9 cents – with prices remaining steady in other parts of the country. The trending decline is due to an unseasonable glut of gasoline in the U.S. market, record high refinery production rates, moderate demand, and a recent drop in crude oil prices.
The Great Lakes and Central states are seeing the biggest drops in prices this week with five regional states making the top 10 list of largest weekly declines, including Ohio (-9 cents). Ohio’s average is within pennies of May 2016 prices ($2.18).
Historically, gasoline stocks start to fall in April, however this year the region has seen unseasonable increases in gasoline stocks, which continues to build due to low driving demand. Projections for high summer travel volume will likely cause demand to peak later this summer – July or August.
On Monday morning, U.S. petroleum futures were below $50 per barrel, but they have gained slightly after encouraging remarks from the Russian and Saudi Arabian energy ministers over the weekend. The energy ministers stated that there is budding consensus to extend production cuts beyond the June 30 deadline and into 2018, signaling that OPEC and non-OPEC producers are willing to take necessary steps to rebalance the market. The U.S. rig count is now up a whopping 375 oil rigs when compared to last year’s count at this time. Continued increases in the supply and exploration of crude will certainly counter OPEC’s efforts to rebalance the market. Only time will tell if supply restrictions and rising demand will shorten the oversupply – and ultimately lead to higher retail prices at the pump.
This week’s average prices: South Central Ohio Average $2.198
Average price during the week of May 1, 2017 $2.281
Average price during the week of May 9, 2016 $2.222
Here is the price per gallon of unleaded self-serve gasoline in various areas:
$2.261 East Liverpool
$2.121 Washington Court House
Drivers 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.
AAA East Central is a not-for-profit association with 81 local offices in Kentucky, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia serving 2.7 million members.