Washington, D.C. – Gasoline demand surged last week, buoyed by increased pre-holiday consumer confidence. But fears of the COVID-19 Coronavirus omicron variant’s economic impact may threaten future global oil consumption.
As a result, pump prices fell again last week as crude oil prices wobbled—neither rising steadily nor falling rapidly. The national average for a gallon of gas dipped three cents to $3.30.
“A recovering economy coupled with strong employment is leading to increased demand for gasoline,” said Andrew Gross, AAA spokesperson. “This demand increase should drive pump prices higher, but it’s been blunted by the wavering price of crude oil.”
Today’s national average of $3.30 is 11 cents less than a month ago and $1.09 more than a year ago.
The nation’s top 10 largest weekly decreases: Indiana (?6 cents), Michigan (?6 cents), Ohio (?5 cents), Arizona (?5 cents), Illinois (?5 cents), Florida (?4 cents), Colorado (?4 cents), Alabama (?3 cents), Kentucky (?3 cents) and Wisconsin (?3 cents).
The nation’s top 10 most expensive markets: California ($4.66), Hawaii ($4.33), Washington ($3.86), Nevada ($3.86), Oregon ($3.77), Arizona ($3.69), Alaska ($3.69), Idaho ($3.60), Utah ($3.55) and Pennsylvania ($3.55).
Oil Market Dynamics
At the close of Friday’s formal trading session, WTI decreased by $1.52 to settle at $70.86. Crude prices declined last week due to growing market concerns that the omicron variant of COVID-19 Coronavirus will lead to a decrease in demand as governments around the globe increase measures to curb transmission rates.
Additionally, crude prices declined despite EIA’s new data revealing that total domestic crude stocks decreased by 4.6 million bbl to 428.3 million bbl. The current stock level is 14.4 percent lower than mid-December 2020. For this week, crude prices could drop further if omicron concerns persist.
Motorists can find current gas prices along their route with the free AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad, and Android. The app can also map a route, find discounts, book a hotel, and access AAA roadside assistance. Learn more at AAA.com/mobile.
About AAA – The Auto Club Group
The Auto Club Group (ACG) is the second-largest AAA club in North America with more than 14 million members across 14 U.S. states, the province of Quebec, and two U.S. territories.
ACG and its affiliates provide members with roadside assistance, insurance products, banking, and financial services, travel offerings, and more. ACG belongs to the national AAA federation with more than 62 million members in the United States and Canada. AAA’s mission is to protect and advance freedom of mobility and improve traffic safety.