The latest data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) showed that the average cost for Regular gasoline in America fell during the past week by five cents to $2.36 per gallon, the first increase in a month and the largest gain since January. Regionally, the cheapest gas in the country can be found in South Carolina, where a gallon of Regular costs just $2.05 on average. Residents of California as usual have to pay the most in the continental U.S. for Regular ($2.98/gallon), and San Francisco is again the city with the nation’s highest average price ($3.13/gallon).
The latest uptick at the pump is due in part to last week’s rebound in the price of crude oil, which had been under pressure recently because of supply issues. Moreover, the price of West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude at one point in March was down by more than 13 percent from the year-to-date high after doubts were raised about OPEC’s ability to maintain output curbs alongside rapidly rising U.S. production. Hedge funds have taken advantage of the recent price action in oil and reduced their net long positioning considerably. Such trading activity has created a more balanced oil market that could result in more price stability (less volatility), at least in the near-term. That is good news for consumers who are already grappling with rising inflation pressures outside of the energy arena.
Sources: U.S. EIA, DShort, GasBuddy, Bloomberg, Twitter, Reuters
Post author: Charles CouchDisclosures