Nationwide Average Gas Price Falls for 10th Consecutive Week
After hitting record highs earlier this summer, Americans have been getting a bit of relief at the pump as the average price per gallon of gas has continued to recede. Last week, the national average gas price came in at $3.86 per gallon — down 5.1¢ from the week prior. This marked the 10th straight week of falling prices. According to data from AAA, that ranks as the second-longest streak since 2005. Meanwhile, GasBuddy notes that the average price per gallon is down 51.3¢ over the past month. However, today’s prices are still 72.2¢ higher than they were this time last year.
Looking more closely at this week’s figures, the most commonly encountered gas price across the U.S. was $3.49 per gallon. That’s not only 37¢ lower than the average price but is also down a dime from last week. Other common prices (in order of commonality) were $3.59, $3.69, $3.99 and $3.39. Elsewhere, the media price per gallon was down 8¢ at $3.69. Among the most expensive 10% of stations recorded, the average price was $5.18 per gallon last week while an average of $3.20 was observed among the least expensive stations.
As per usual, the state with the highest average price for gas was California at $5.27. The Golden State was once again followed by Hawaii with an average of $5.25. Nevada was a distant third at $4.89 per gallon. On the other side, Arkansas had the lowest average price in the country, coming in at just $3.37. Mississippi and Georgia followed with averages of $3.39 and $3.40 respectively.
Summing up the latest finding, GasBuddy’s head of petroleum analysis Patrick De Haan explained, “While some areas saw gas prices rise slightly last week, the national average saw yet another weekly decline, extending the streak to ten straight weeks.” As for the bad news, he added, “The pace of declines is certainly slowing down as oil prices have bounced up slightly, but the West Coast and Northeastern U.S. are areas that still may see gas prices decline, while the South and Midwest see the drop fade and potentially slight increases.” De Haan also noted that natural disaster disruptions such as hurricanes have not been a factor so far this year, but could prove to have a negative impact as the season for such events continues.
These falling gas prices come as inflation continues to be a hot topic. In fact, in July, month-over-month inflation was flat thanks largely to a 7.6% decline in the price of gasoline. Nevertheless, year-over-year inflation still registered at 8.5% last month.
After a trying spring and summer, it’s relieving to see that gas prices are continuing their downward trend. Unfortunately, with many unknowns ahead and prices still above where they were last year, it’s too early for Americans to really celebrate. Meanwhile, we’ll have to wait a couple more weeks to see what overall inflation looks like — with or without declining gasoline prices factored in.