BOSTON (GasBuddy) The national average has risen 1.5 cents per gallon in the last week to $2.22 per gallon under threats from OPEC cutting oil production and as Hurricane Matthew heads for the East Coast, according to price-tracker GasBuddy.com.
Gasoline prices are up for the seventh straight day thanks to several main issues: OPEC’s decision last week to cut oil production, which caused oil prices to immediately jump 5%, as well as refinery outages scattered around the country.
States seeing the largest weekly increases: Ohio (+ 14 cents), Kentucky (+10 cents), Indiana (+10 cents), Louisiana (+5 cents) and Iowa (+5 cents). Twenty-six states saw average prices rise last week, while 24 saw declines. Decliners were mainly those affected by the restoration of the Colonial Pipeline: Georgia (-4 cents), Delaware (-4 cents), Tennessee (-3 cents), Utah (-3 cents), Maryland (-2 cents) and South Carolina (-2 cents). While the U.S. national average remains below its year ago level, it’s not by much: just 7.4 cents lower.
Crude oil prices jumped $4 per barrel since last Tuesday, when OPEC indicated it would finally curb crude oil production. West Texas Intermediate crude oil spiked nearly immediately after, and the news provides a solid floor for short-term oil prices, but skepticism over the cut may provide some headwinds to a larger rally in oil markets.
Refiners, on the other hand, have seen better days. Outages and maintenance has impaired some refiners in the West and Midwest, delivering higher prices in those two regions as issues have crept up. Relief may not be immediate in either locale, as maintenance continues, interrupting normal fuel output at refineries. Gas prices may continue to move higher in both of these regions this week due to these persistent refinery issues.
The nation’s cheapest gasoline prices can be found in Texas, where average prices are just $1.98 per gallon, followed by New Jersey ($1.98) where a 23-cent per gallon gasoline tax increase was just passed. Missouri, at $1.98, rounded out the only three states where average prices were under $2 per gallon.
As Hurricane Matthew takes aim for the United States this week, GasBuddy remains ready to re-activate its Gasoline Availability Tracker, should power outages and fuel supply issues surface as a result.
GasBuddy is the premiere source for real-time local gas prices. Founded in 2000, GasBuddy.com developed as an initiative to provide consumers access to local, current gas prices. Through the GasBuddy.com website and the free GasBuddy mobile app, users can find and share gas prices with fellow drivers, saving big money at the pump.