By: Ragina C. Ali, AAA Mid-Atlantic Public Relations Manager
Drivers across Maryland had another break at the pump this week as prices dropped several pennies on the week. Gasoline supplies increased slightly locally and nationally while crude oil prices dropped more than $4 per barrel since last Friday, pushing pump prices lower. Should these current trends continue, drivers will likely continue to enjoy paying less to fill up at the pump.
The gas price average in Maryland today is $2.44, which is down respectively four cents in the last week and three cents from last month, yet up 21 cents from this date last year.
Today’s national gas price average is $2.53, down respectively three cents in the last week and a penny in the last month, yet up 26 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)||$2.54||$2.57||$2.55||$2.34|
|Crude Oil||$54.19per barrel(1/24/20)||$58.54per barrel(1/17/20)||$61.72per barrel(12/27/19)||$53.69per barrel(1/25/19)|
At the close of NYMEX trading Friday, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil settled at $54.19 per barrel, $4.35 lower than last Friday’s close. Crude prices dropped all week, experiencing its biggest weekly fall since May on Friday. Fears that economic growth and demand for oil will be affected by the coronavirus outbreak in China helped to push prices lower. Widespread travel restrictions, flight cancellations and reduction in regional travel could affect China’s overall economic activity.
“Gas prices typically trend lower in January as demand for fuel drops due to colder temperatures and fewer people driving,” says Ragina C. Ali, Manager of Public and Government Affairs for AAA Mid-Atlantic. “With lower crude oil prices and an increase in gasoline supply, drivers are likely to see this trend continue.”
The Week Ahead
Since Monday, the national average for a gallon of regular gasoline has dropped a penny while local prices have dropped even more. In its latest weekly report, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) revealed that total domestic stocks of gasoline continue to grow. For gasoline demand, EIA estimates that it grew slightly, but the current level is lower than last years at this same time. As these trends continue, American motorists will likely continue to see lower pump prices.