According to done by the American Automobile Association (AAA), today’s national average price of a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline is $2.32, which is at its highest price since June 15 and has increased over the last 15 days.
In 47 states and Washington D.C., pump prices moved higher on the week, which resulted from strong demand, declining U.S. crude oil inventory levels and rising reports.
“As summer moves forward, the days of dropping summer gas prices appear to be behind us for now,” said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson. “U.S. crude inventories are moving in the opposite direction of demand – a perfect storm for continued price increases heading into August.”
According to AAA, the nation’s top 10 least expensive markets are: South Carolina ($2.02), Alabama ($2.03), Mississippi ($2.03), Arkansas ($2.06), Missouri ($2.08), Tennessee ($2.09), Oklahoma ($2.09), Louisiana ($2.09), Virginia ($2.09) and Texas ($2.10).
According to AAA, that nation’s top 10 markets with the largest monthly increase include: Indiana (+26 cents), Ohio (+20 cents), Michigan (+17 cents), Kentucky (+15 cents), Florida (+13 cents), Oklahoma (+13 cents), South Carolina (+11 cents), Kansas (+11 cents), Washington, D.C (+10 cents) and Delaware (+10 cents).
For the week ending on July 21, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported a 7.2 million barrel drop in U.S. crude inventories, which was much higher than expected.
Notable states on the list of cheapest markets include: Texas ($2.10), Alabama ($2.03) and Mississippi ($2.03). According to the latest weekly report done by the EIA, 4.5 million bbl of the nationwide drawdown of crude oil came from the South or Southeast region. This weekly drop pulled regional crude inventories below the 250-million-bbl mark, after reaching 260 million bbl in June.
Gasoline prices in the Rockies are among the most stable across the nation, with prices only fluctuating by a few cents on the week. The declines are likely the result of steady inventory and demand.
Prices across the Great Lakes and Central States have seen significant movement over the past month, and states in the region that top the list of largest monthly increases are the following: Indiana (+26 cents), Ohio (+20 cents), Michigan (+17 cents) and Kentucky (+15 cents).
Latest reports by the EIA show Midwest gasoline inventories dropped by 300,000 bbl to 32 million bbl just last week. Ohio (+10 cents), Michigan (+9 cents), Indiana (+9 cents), Illinois (+6 cents) and Kansas (+6 cents) all topped the list of largest weekly increases.
Gas prices along the West Coast continue to be the highest in the country, with six states topping the list of most expensive U.S. markets: Hawaii ($3.05), California ($2.94), Washington ($2.81), Alaska ($2.78), Oregon ($2.66) and Nevada ($2.62).
The latest EIA reports show West Coast gasoline inventories jumped 200,000 bbl to 27.1 million bbl.
Following close behind the West Coast are the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast, where gas prices across the region continue to join the pack of most expensive states in the country.
According to the latest EIA report, gas stocks in the region decreased by 2.1 million bbl last week.