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Triple A: As October cruises toward the finish line, gas prices look less scary

From Triple A:

The national average pump price fell nine cents over the past week to hit $3.79. It has dropped daily since October 11, primarily due to lower oil prices and fewer drivers than usual fueling up. Virginia’s gas price average of $3.52 is down a nickel from last Monday, but up 16 cents from last month and up 25 cents from this day last year.

“Global recession fears coupled with the Biden Administration’s announcement to continue tapping the Strategic Petroleum Reserve into December has helped temper oil prices,” said Morgan Dean, AAA Mid-Atlantic spokesperson. “This will help take the pressure off pump prices, benefitting drivers and their wallets.”

According to recent data from the Energy Information Administration (EIA), gas demand increased slightly from 8.28 million b/d to 8.68 million b/d last week. Total domestic gasoline stocks decreased marginally from 209.5 million bbl to 209.4 million bbl. Although gasoline demand is up slightly, it remains nearly 1 million bbl lower than this date last year. If demand remains low and oil prices don’t spike, pump prices will likely keep falling.

Today’s national average of $3.79 is nine cents higher than a month ago and 41 cents more than a year ago.

Quick Stats

The nation’s top 10 largest weekly decreases: Alaska (−33 cents), California (−30 cents), Oregon (−26 cents), Washington (−24 cents), Nevada (−20 cents), Indiana (−15 cents), Michigan (−15 cents), Wisconsin (−14 cents), Ohio (−13 cents) and Illinois (−11 cents).

The nation’s top 10 least expensive markets: Georgia ($3.20), Texas ($3.20), Mississippi ($3.27), Arkansas ($3.30), South Carolina ($3.31), Tennessee ($3.31), Louisiana ($3.34), Florida ($3.35), Alabama ($3.37) and Missouri ($3.40).

Oil Market Dynamics

At the close of Friday’s formal trading session, WTI increased by 54 cents to settle at $85.05. Although crude prices increased after the EIA reported that total domestic commercial crude inventories dropped by 1.7 million bbl to 437.4 million bbl last week, the price of oil had declined earlier in the week due to ongoing market concerns about crude demand as recession fears increased. If the market remains concerned about the rate of economic growth this week, crude prices could decline.

AAA has a variety of resources to help motorists save on fuel:

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