CHARLOTTE, N.C. (News Release) — Since Memorial Day weekend, gas prices in the Carolinas have continued to see an uptick due to high crude oil prices. However, last week crude prices fluctuated from a high of $75/bbl down to $71/bbl.
“Prices are showing little-to-no signs of relief at the gas pump,” said Tiffany Wright, Public Affairs Director, AAA – The Auto Club Group in the Carolinas. “However, based on such strong gasoline demand numbers, these prices still aren’t stopping motorists from filling up.”
North Carolina’s gas price average saw no changes on the week, still currently at $2.90. This is 2 cents more expensive than a month ago and 89 cents more expensive than last year. South Carolina’s gas price average increased by 5 cents on the week, currently at $2.91. This is 14 cents more expensive than a month ago and 99 cents more expensive than last year. Both North and South Carolina are a part of the nation’s top 10 least expensive markets.
The national gas price average has increased 13 cents to $3.17. That is 98 cents more than a year ago, but 41 cents cheaper than this time in July 2014, when the national average was last above $3/gallon.
News from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) over the weekend, that they have reached a deal to increase production in August, could give crude oil prices the potential to drop under $70/bbl. Regardless, AAA expects higher pump prices to be the norm throughout the summer.
While gas demand dipped to 9.28 million b/d, in the Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) latest report, the rate is strong for summer. The EIA report also shows gasoline stocks increased by 1 million bbl to 236.5 million. The jump in supply and drop in demand mitigated fluctuation to the national gas price average, which had a two-cent increase on the week. During the last seven days, 25 state averages increased by at least two cents, with 11 of those seeing jumps of a nickel or more.
Although prices fluctuated at the end of the day because of a stronger dollar, crude prices declined on the week due to supply concerns and tension between Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates that prevented OPEC and its allies from reaching a deal to increase crude production. However, under the compromise, which media reports confirmed over the weekend, OPEC will increase daily crude production by 400,000 barrels in August. The increase is expected to help lower crude prices, assuming it is not met with higher demand. Crude prices could decline this week in anticipation of the production increase.
For updated state and metro prices log on to https://gasprices.aaa.com/
Motorists can find current gas prices along their route with the free AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android. The app can also be used to 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. For more information, get the AAA Mobile app, visit AAA.com, and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.