17 December 2018

--GAS PRICE UPDATE--

 

AAA WILL NOT SEND A GAS PRICE BRIEF ON MONDAY MORNING, DECEMBER 24 (our Public Affairs office will be closed for the holiday). 

 

Instead, below is an updated Gas Price Brief for Friday, December 21

Reporters are encouraged to visit GasPrices.AAA.com to check updated gas price averages


-- The next AAA Gas Price Brief will be distributed on Friday, December 28th --

 

NEWS RELEASE

     


MEDIA CONTACTS:

Florida
Mark Jenkins, spokesman, AAA - The Auto Club Group,
office: (813) 288-7906, cell: (850) 532-0730, MAJenkins@AAASouth.com

Georgia
Garrett Townsend, GA Public Affairs Director, AAA - The Auto Club Group,
cell: (404) 932-1965, GTownsend@AutoClubGroup.AAA.com

Michigan
Nancy Cain, spokesperson, AAA - The Auto Club Group
office: (313) 336-1514, cell: (313) 268-4038, NCain@AAAMichigan.com

Tennessee
Stephanie Milani, TN Public Affairs Director, AAA - The Auto Club Group,
office: (865) 862-9252, cell: (865) 556-2927, SMilani@AAASouth.com

U.S. AVERAGE PRICE

(Per Gallon)
$2.38 (-4¢) 

 

AAA: GAS PRICES DROP AGAIN; MORE DECLINES TO COME

TAMPA, Fla. (December 17, 2018)  Gas prices across the U.S. declined another 4 cents last week, and should decline even more through the end of the year, as futures prices are forecast to decline this week. This is good news for the estimated 102.1 million Americans forecast to take a holiday road trip in the next two weeks. Those drivers are saving $5-$15 on a full tank of gas compared to last summer, and should find the lowest holiday gas prices in two years.

"Holiday travelers will have more jingle in their pockets after they fill-up the family vehicle," said Mark Jenkins, spokesman, AAA - The Auto Club Group. "Prices are already at 2-year lows for the holidays, and should slip even lower in the next two weeks. Oil prices have been unable to gain significant upward momentum after OPEC announced plans to cut production. The price of crude declined last week and should drop again this week, because industry analysts are skeptical that OPEC’s plan could rebalance what is currently an oversupplied market. If oil prices drop even further this week, that would reduce the cost of producing gasoline and allow additional price cuts at the pump."

Fuel Fundamentals

  • Oil inventories declined a modest 1.2 million barrels (-0.1%). U.S. stocks remain 7 percent above the five year average for this time of year.
  • Gasoline supplies grew nearly 1-percent, and are slightly above year-ago levels.
  • Domestic oil production took a small step back, yet remains about 20 percent stronger than a year ago. 
  • Gasoline production took a giant leap as refiners ramp up for holiday travelers. Production rates are 8 percent stronger than a week ago, yet on par with this time last year. 
  • Implied gasoline demand rose nearly 2 percent, and is keeping pace with this time last year. 

Oil Analysts Skeptical of OPEC Production Cuts

At the close of Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX, WTI decreased $1.38 per barrel to settle at $51.20/b. Oil prices have mostly fallen this week as market observers continue to worry that the global crude market is oversupplied. Although the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and other oil producers, including Russia, agreed more than a week ago to reduce output by 1.2 million barrels per day at the beginning of 2019, crude prices will likely remain low until the production cuts begin. However, with U.S. crude production near record highs, oil analysts are increasingly skeptical of whether OPEC’s production cuts would actually work, which is why oil prices declined last week. Our partners at OPIS predict crude prices to dip below $50 per barrel this week. That would be $2/b below where prices were trading on Sunday afternoon. So far, the price of crude has yet to settle below $50/b all year. The lowest daily settlement of WTI this year was $50.29/b on November 29. Crude prices account for about 50 percent of the price of gasoline. Because of this, for every dollar oil prices shift, gas prices follow by about 2.5 cents.

Regional Gas Prices

Gas prices in Florida are declining again, after rising an average of 3 cents last week. On Sunday, gas prices averaged $2.30 per gallon, which is only 1.5 cents more than this time a week ago. Florida drivers are now paying 21 cents per gallon less than they did two months ago, and 62 cents less than this year’s high. 

Florida gas prices have declined a little more than 50 cents in the past two months, and could drop another 10 cents before the end of the year. Compared to last summer, Florida drivers are saving an average of $7.50 for a full tank of gasoline. 

Click here to view AAA’s state and metro gas price averages

  • Most expensive gas price averages: Panama City ($2.63), Miami ($2.47), and West palm Beach - Boca Raton ($2.46)
  • Least expensive gas price averages: The Villages ($2.17), Orlando ($2.20), Jacksonville ($2.20)

Prices for the holiday season are forecast to hit two year lows, as AAA estimates 5.3 million Florida drivers will hit the holiday road. Florida gas prices averaged $2.44 per gallon on Christmas Day 2017, and $2.29 in 2016. 

Gas prices in Georgia have declined for the ninth consecutive week, for a total discount of 62 cents. Gas prices averaged $2.18 per gallon on Sunday, 3.5 cents less than a week ago, about 32 cents less than last month, and 12 cents less than last year. Georgia motorists are saving nearly $10 on a full tank of gas, compared to what they paid in the summer. Sunday’s state average is also 9 cents per gallon less than what drivers paid on Christmas Day 2017.  

Click here to view AAA’s state and metro gas price averages

  • Most expensive gas price averages: Hinesville-Fort Stewart ($2.36), Brunswick ($2.28), and Savannah ($2.27)
  • Least expensive gas price averages: Catoosa-Dade-Walker ($2.04), Dalton ($2.06), and Rome ($2.07)

Gas prices in Michigan dropped an average of 8 cents last week. On Sunday, prices at the pump averaged $2.26 across the state. The state average is 25 cents less than a month ago, and 19 cents less than this time last year. 

Gas prices have declined 75 cents in the past two months. The average Michigan driver is now saving $13 on a full tank of gas, compared to what they paid in the summer.

Pump prices in Metro Detroit are about 2 cents higher than the state average. Sunday’s average price of $2.28 is 5 cents less than a week ago, 28 cents less than last month, and 20 cents less than this time last year. The average driver in Detroit now saves nearly $12.50 on a full tank of gasoline, compared to what they paid in the summer. 

Click here to view AAA’s state and metro gas price averages

  • Most expensive gas price averages: Marquette ($2.37), Ann Arbor ($2.32), Metro Detroit ($2.28)
  • Least expensive gas price averages: Flint ($2.17), Jackson ($2.19), and Saginaw-Bay City-Midland ($2.19)

Gas prices in Tennessee dropped another 5 cents last week, and could move even lower this week, because of additional declines in the price of oil. 

Sunday’s state average price of $2.12 per gallon is nearly 30 cents less than a month ago, and about 10 cents less than this time last year. It’s possible, the state average could reach $2.00 per gallon before the end of the year, unless oil prices rise. 

Compared to last summer, drivers in Tennessee are now saving nearly $10 on a full tank of gas. The current state average is about 11 cents per gallon less than what motorists paid on Christmas Day 2017. 

Click here to view AAA’s state and metro gas price averages

  • Most expensive gas price averages: Nashville ($2.22), Johnson City ($2.22), and Kingsport-Bristol ($2.18)
  • Least expensive gas price averages: Chattanooga ($1.95), Cleveland ($2.00), and Knoxville ($2.05)

Gas Price Tools

                                                                   CURRENT AND PAST PRICE AVERAGES

                                                                                     Regular Unleaded Gasoline

Sunday Saturday Week Ago Month Ago One Year Ago 2018 High Record High
National $2.378 $2.383 $2.423 $2.641 $2.434 $2.97 (5/26/2018) $4.11   (7/17/2008)
Florida $2.295 $2.301 $2.281 $2.510 $2.381 $2.92 (5/25/2018) $4.08   (7/17/2008)
Georgia $2.184 $2.188 $2.216 $2.495 $2.297 $2.84 (5/27/2018) $4.16   (9/15/2008)
Michigan $2.260 $2.271 $2.343 $2.507 $2.454 $3.13 (5/25/2018) $4.26    (5/4/2011)
Detroit $2.279 $2.285 $2.333 $2.558 $2.483 $3.11 (5/25/2018) $4.24    (5/4/2011)
Tennessee $2.124 $2.129 $2.169 $2.434 $2.227 $2.73 (5/27/2018) $4.12  (9/15/2008)
Click here to view current gasoline price averages


Gas Price Survey Methodology
AAA updates fuel price averages daily at www.GasPrices.AAA.com. Every day up to 130,000 stations are surveyed based on credit card swipes and direct feeds in cooperation with the Oil Price Information Service (OPIS) and Wright Express for unmatched statistical reliability. All average retail prices in this report are for a gallon of regular, unleaded gasoline.

About The Auto Club Group 
The Auto Club Group (ACG) is the second largest AAA club in North America. ACG and its affiliates provide membership, insurance, financial services and travel offerings to over 9.6 million members across eleven states and two U.S. territories including Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Michigan, Nebraska, North Dakota, Tennessee, Wisconsin, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands; most of Illinois and Minnesota; and a portion of Indiana. ACG belongs to the national AAA federation with more than 59 million members in the United States and Canada and whose mission includes protecting and advancing freedom of mobility and improving traffic safety. Motorists can map a route, identify gas prices, find discounts, book a hotel, and access AAA roadside assistance with the AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android. Learn more at AAA.com/mobile. Visit AAA on the Internet at AAA.com.