Since Monday, the national average for a gallon of regular gasoline has increased by four cents to $2.16, which is five cents more than a week ago, four cents more than a month ago, yet still significantly cheaper than last year (-43 cents). Since mid-November, domestic daily crude prices have steadily increased toward $45 per barrel, contributing to pump prices rising across the country in just this last week. However, low demand will likely limit price gains, with the latest report from the Energy Information Administration (EIA) showing that demand decreased from 8.13 million b/d to 7.97 million b/d last week – the lowest reading since early June. As demand continues to decline into the winter driving season, American drivers should expect gas prices to remain lower when compared to last year’s pump prices, moving into 2021.
At the close of Thursday’s formal trading session, WTI increased by 36 cents to settle at $45.64. Crude prices have increased this week amid growing market optimism that vaccines for the coronavirus will be available in the coming weeks. However, the current surge in the number of infections domestically appears to have capped crude oil price gains while states increase measures meant to stop the spread of the virus. Additionally, the increase in prices was supported by EIA’s weekly report revealing that total domestic crude inventories fell by 700,000 bbl to 488 million bbl last week.
Largest Weekly Increases
- Since last Thursday, these 10 states have seen the largest increases in their averages: Florida (+12 cents), Ohio (+12 cents), Michigan (+10 cents), Delaware (+10 cents), Pennsylvania (+9 cents), Kentucky (+8 cents), Indiana (+6 cents), Maryland (+6 cents), Texas (+6 cents) and North Carolina (+6 cents).