A dozen states had at least one gas station selling gas for less than $2 a gallon as of Monday, a spokesman for AAA tells MarketWatch.
And the national average retail price, which stood at $2.595 as of Monday, could follow suit before year-end. AAA spokesman Michael Green states:
“The number of states with stations [selling gas for] under $2 is likely to grow fast in the coming weeks.”
That’s partly because crude oil prices have fallen lower than they’ve been since early 2009.
According to AAA’s Daily Fuel Gauge Report, ongoing refinery problems also have contributed to recent price drops. Prices should continue to fall in autumn due to declining demand and the switchover to winter-blend gasoline.
A global oversupply of crude oil and concern about China’s recent economic woes also contribute to sagging crude oil prices, AAA reports:
China is one of the world’s largest and most rapidly growing economies. Evidence of slower than projected growth in the Chinese economy is rippling through global markets and has put additional downward pressure on the price of crude. Both crude oil benchmarks (Brent and West Texas Intermediate) ended last week at their lowest levels since March 2009, and the market is expected to remain volatile in the near term.
As a result, average U.S. gas prices have not been this low for this time of year since 2004, according to the AAA Daily Fuel Gauge Report.
States that AAA categorizes as being in the Pacific Northwest had the highest prices Monday, with the top five ranging from $3.47 in California to $3.04 in Washington:
- California — $3.47
- Alaska — $3.43
- Nevada — $3.18
- Hawaii — $3.17
- Washington — $3.04
The lowest state average Monday for a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline was $2.11 in South Carolina.
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