Gas prices have continued a downward spiral even with Christmas fast approaching, dropping 18 cents since last week with the national average standing at $3.101, according to an American Automobile Association (AAA) news release Thursday.
AAA said the continued drop means that about 20 states have averaged lower than $3 per gallon.
“The cost of oil, gasoline’s main ingredient, has been hovering in the low-to-mid $70s per barrel, and that’s $50 less than the peak last spring,” Andrew Gross, AAA spokesperson, said. “Combined with low seasonal demand, gas prices could slide a bit more before leveling off.”
The release said new information from the Energy Information Administration said gas demand dropped from 8.36 million barrels per day to 8.26 b/d while the total domestic gasoline stock rose by 4.5 million barrels (bbl) to 223.6 million bbl.
It also said the falling demand coincides with the start of the winter driving season when fewer people are on the road because of shorter days and worse weather. Because of this smaller demand and more supply, gas prices continue to get drop.
“At the close of Friday’s formal trading session, WTI decreased by $1.82 to settle at $74.29,” the AAA news release said. “Crude prices decreased at the end of last week due to a weaker dollar and ongoing market concerns that a recession next year could push oil demand and prices lower. This week, lingering market fears about stalled or reversing economic growth could continue to push prices down. Additionally, the EIA reported that total domestic commercial crude stocks expanded substantially by 10.2 million bbl to 424.1 million bbl.”
AAA said Ohio had the 37th highest gas price of all of the states in the country plus Washington, D.C. It said Ohio’s average price per gallon was $2.841 as of Thursday. That is a decrease from one week ago when the price per gallon was $2.992, according to AAA. One month ago, the average price was $3.551.
The lowest area gas prices, according to GasBuddy on Thursday, were:
* Chillicothe — The lowest price was $2.59 at multiple places.
* Greenfield — The lowest price was $2.69 at Marathon.
* Hillsboro — The lowest price was $2.65 at United Dairy Farmers.
* Mount Orab — The lowest price was $3.19 at multiple places.
* Wilmington — The lowest price was $2.78 at Marathon.
Reach Jacob Clary at 937-402-2570.