CINCINNATI — Gas prices in Ohio increased six cents on the week to $2.95 per gallon as travelers hit the road to kick off the unofficial start to summer travel season.
Today’s average is 97 cents more than last year at this time and 17 cents more expensive than last month. This week’s increase landed the state in the third spot on AAA’s Top Ten Largest Weekly Changes List.
Nationwide, the majority of states saw no change to pump prices or a decline on the week. At $3.04, the national gas price average only increased one penny leading up to Memorial Day weekend.
However, prices may not stay stagnant for long. For the week ending May 21, demand jumped to 9.4 million b/d—the highest reported number since early March 2020 and up nearly 30% over the same week last year, indicating motorists are filling up more frequently.
“Gasoline supply and demand levels are looking more like typical summer numbers as demand has steadily jumped week-over-week since the end of April and supply declines. The increasing demand and decreasing supply combined with more expensive crude oil prices mean gas prices are likely to fluctuate throughout June,” said Jenifer Moore, AAA spokeswoman. “We could see some decreases early in the month and increases mid-month as the school year ends and summer travel increases.”
Today’s national average is $1.05 more than last year at this time and 15 cents more expensive than last month. The May national gas price averaged $3/gallon. That is just 11 cents more than the May 2018 and 2019 national averages. With a $3+/gallon average at the start of June, this month could prove to be the most expensive average in years.
At the close of Friday’s formal trading session, WTI decreased by 53 cents to settle at $66.32. Although prices ended the day down due to market liquidation at the end of the month, crude prices gained on the week after the Energy Information Administration’s weekly report showed that total domestic crude inventories decreased by 1.7 million bbl to 484.3 million bbl.
However, last week’s price gains were limited by market concerns that increasing coronavirus infections around the world could reduce crude consumption this year. For this week, crude prices could climb further if EIA’s next report shows another decline in crude stocks.
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.