Posts Tagged ‘pump prices’

Gas Prices Fall to Barely $3 Gal. in Some Markets

Unexpected spring decline could stick for some months.

by on Apr.08, 2013

You're getting a break at the pump, this week.

If your wallet is still hurting from the painfully high fuel prices much of the country experienced over the winter there’s some good news next time you head to the pump.

The average price of a gallon of regular unleaded gas has dipped to just $3.58, a three-cent dip since late last week, 15 cents from a month ago, and 36 cents off of what the typical American motorist was spending this time in 2012. That’s a sharp turnaround from February when some states saw gas surge to near or all-time records, particularly along the West Coast.

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Buyers are still paying an average $4.359 in Hawaii and $4.027 in Washington, D.C., but California is back under the $4.00 mark, at $3.998, according to, a well-respected fuel price tracking service. And it’s down to $3.286 in Montana – where motorists are paying just $3.261 in Billings. Some reports indicate that the price has dropped below the $3.00 mark in a few Rocky Mountain communities near to major refineries.


White House To Clean Up Gas, Auto Emissions

But cutting sulfur content could slightly boost pump price.

by on Mar.29, 2013

The Obama administration is calling for new rules to lower sulfur emissions in gasoline.

The Obama Administration is proposing new rules to reduce the level of noxious sulfur in the nation’s gasoline supply, a move that should reduce emissions – but also add a very small increase in pump prices.

The so-called Tier 3 standards set to go into effect by 2017 would more than offset that increase by improving the nation’s health and saving billions in medical bills, the White House contends. It would yield add-on benefits as lower sulfur levels would permit automakers to adopt even more advanced pollution control systems, several industry executives told .

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The Administration previously took steps to reduce sulfur content in the U.S. diesel fuel supply. That has made it possible for the auto industry to meet stringent smog and particulate rules and, in turn, greatly expand the range of high-mileage diesel passenger vehicles available in the United States.


It’s Driving Season. Why are Gas Prices Tumbling?

After spring run-up, U.S. motorists are catching an unexpected break at the pump.

by on May.30, 2012

Fuel prices have tumbled 27 cents a gallon since their early April peak and the trend is downward.

It wasn’t all that long ago that American motorists were being greeted with shrill headlines forecasting $4, even $5-a-gallon gas by summer.

It certainly seemed plausible after the rapid run-up during late winter and early spring, prices at the pump coming within pennies of the all-time record set back in July 2008.  But a funny thing happened just as the traditional driving season approached: fuel prices began to tumble and the downward trend may well continue through the summer.

Over the Memorial Day holiday various tracking services showed that fuel prices dipped to around $3.65 a gallon, about 27 cents lower than their national peak in early April.

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“Had you asked me back in January if the national average would have been that low on Memorial Day, I likely would have chuckled,” said Patrick DeHaan, a senior analyst with  Looking forward, he told, “prices could go either way,” depending upon a variety of factors, though for now, the trend appears to be downward.

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Have Fuel Prices Peaked?

Some forecasts predict the worst is over.

by on Apr.11, 2012

It may not be much be gas prices have settled back in recent days.

It may be difficult to celebrate when you’re paying $3.92 a gallon for gas but the good news is that’s a penny cheaper than where the national average for a gallon of regular stood last week, according to the AAA.

Indeed, while there are still plenty of pessimists wondering how much beyond the previous record oil prices might yet go there are signs that the run-up at the gas price has or will soon reach its peak. Those who think the numbers could soon start falling point to factors such as the weak European economy, the slow American recovery and signals from the Iranian government it may be willing to compromise on its controversial nuclear program.

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That’s good news for weary motorists who have been bombarded with pessimistic headlines counting the days until gas would pass the previous $4.11 record set in July 2008.  Some observers have been forecasting the market wouldn’t settle down until gas came closer to the $5 mark, in fact.


Consumer Confidence Up, But Oil Prices Slip Back Down – For Now

No $4 gas in sight…not yet, anyway.

by on Aug.25, 2009

Oil prices have been moving up in recent months, but suffered an unexpected setback, Tuesday.

Oil prices have been moving up in recent months, but suffered an unexpected setback, Tuesday.

The good news threatened to turn bad, Tuesday. Driven by improving consumer confidence and a small but measurable improvement in the devastated U.S. housing market, stocks resumed their upward path, with the Dow Jones Industrial average closing the day at 9539.  That was a modest 30-point gain, but marked a 404-point jump over the last six days.

The Conference Board, a widely-quoted research firm, announced Tuesday that consumer attitudes have taken an upturn after two monthly declines. In July, the figure stood at a revised 47.4, surging to 54.1 in August – significantly better than observers had expected and the highest point since May. Whether this means anything as the U.S. economy continues to shed jobs, businesses continue to fire people and government deficits reach the stratosphere remains to be seen.

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Oil traders were hoping to capture some of that magic, since consumer confidence is one of the strongest indicators of near-term spending. With consumers driving less and factories turning out less, prices collapsed last December, but things may be reversing course. See Ken Zino’s analysis of the oil pricing roller coaster and our failed energy policies by clicking here.

As anyone with a car knows, fuel prices have been steadily increasing this year.  The oil industry has been seeing a number of opportunities over the last few weeks, including increased demand in China, to raise prices. And that has nudged prices steadily higher in recent trading. It’s beginning to look like another price spike could be looming.