News Release, AAA Mid-Atlantic
Less than two weeks ahead of the busy Thanksgiving travel holiday, local gas prices are dropping as they typically do during the fall months. The Maryland gas price average is down four cents on the week, thanks to an increase in gasoline supplies on the East coast, a drop in gasoline demand and stable crude oil prices. While prices are down slightly compared to last week, AAA advises drivers that fluctuations remain possible through the end of the month.
The gas price average in Maryland today is $2.47, which is down four cents in the last week, is the same as last month, and is down two cents from this date last year.
Today’s national gas price average is $2.60, down respectively two cents in the last week, four cents in the last month and five cents from this time last year.
CURRENT AND PAST GAS PRICE AVERAGES
Regular Unleaded Gasoline
|Today||Week Ago||Month Ago||Year Ago|
|Washington Suburbs(MD only)||$2.55||$2.57||$2.59||$2.68|
|Crude Oil||$57.72per barrel(11/15/19)||$57.24per barrel(11/8/19)||$57.40per barrel(10/11/19)||$56.46per barrel(11/16/18)|
At the close of NYMEX trading Friday, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil settled at $57.72 per barrel, 48 cents higher than last Friday’s close. Information from the Energy Information Administration (EIA) showed an increase in crude inventories for the third straight week. The optimism surrounding trade talks between the U.S and China have supported increases in crude prices recently, but yesterday’s build seen in gasoline inventories took the strength out of that support.
“After weeks of unseasonal increases at the pump, Maryland motorists are catching a bit of a break as gas prices trend slightly lower this week,” says Ragina C. Ali, Manager of Public and Government Affairs for AAA Mid-Atlantic. “While we could very well see continued fluctuations at the pump, no major increases are expected. This could be good news for motorists gearing up for the busy Thanksgiving holiday travel weekend less than two weeks away.”
The Week Ahead
According to the latest EIA Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO), U.S. regular gasoline retail prices averaged $2.63 per gallon in October, up to three cents per gallon from September. Average U.S. regular gasoline retail prices were higher than expected, in large part, because of ongoing issues from refinery outages in California. For the U.S. national average, EIA expects regular gasoline retail prices to fall to $2.50 per gallon in December and an average $2.62 per gallon in 2020.
More than 55 million travelers are making plans to kick off the holiday season with a trip of 50 miles or more away from home this Thanksgiving with 49.3 million people planning to travel by automobile.