Gas prices in reverse? Not so fast


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CINCINNATI — Consumers caught a little break last week as the national average price for a gallon of gas leveled off at $3.41, down a penny since last week. Since October 30, the national average has fallen on nine different days, after having risen steadily each of the previous 31 days.

“A slight dip in demand, possibly due to seasonal changes in driving habits, is contributing to some relief at the pump,” says Kara Hitchens, spokesperson for AAA. “Unfortunately, the ongoing tight supply of crude oil will likely keep gas prices fluctuating, instead of dropping, for some time.”

Gas prices are also leveling off across Ohio after trending upward for weeks. Today’s average is $3.26, down slightly from last week. Still the average price of gas in Ohio is up $1.29 compared to last year on this date.

Quick stats

The nation’s top 10 largest weekly changes: Arizona (+7 cents), California (+6 cents), Pennsylvania (+4 cents), Illinois (−4 cents), Oklahoma (−4 cents), Indiana (−4 cents), Delaware (−4 cents), Ohio (−4 cents), Michigan (−3 cents) and South Dakota (−3 cents).

The nation’s top 10 most expensive markets: California ($4.68), Hawaii ($4.34), Nevada ($3.97), Washington ($3.87), Oregon ($3.78), Alaska ($3.71), Utah ($3.70), Idaho ($3.69), Arizona ($3.66) and Washington, D.C. ($3.62).

Market dynamics

At the close of Friday’s formal trading session, WTI decreased by 80 cents to settle at $80.79. Crude prices decreased slightly last week as inflation fears weighed on the market. Additionally, prices also fell after EIA reported that the total domestic crude supply increased by 1 million bbl to 435.1 million bbl last week.

However, according to EIA’s data, the total domestic crude supply is still down 11 percent compared to the previous year at this time, helping to keep elevated price pressure on crude. For this week, crude prices could decrease again if EIA’s next weekly report shows another crude inventory increase.

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.

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