Gas Prices Dip in Pennsylvania; National Average Drops for First Time in Months

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Gas prices in Western Pennsylvania are two cents cheaper this week at $3.010 per gallon, according to AAA East Central’s Gas Price Report.

This week’s average prices: Western Pennsylvania Average                  $3.010
Average price during the week of March 22, 2021                                     $3.036
Average price during the week of March 30, 2020                                    $2.229

The average price of unleaded self-serve gasoline in various areas:      

$2.992      Altoona
$3.077      Beaver
$3.099      Bradford
$2.944      Brookville
$3.044      Butler
$2.946      Clarion
$2.969      DuBois
$3.062      Erie
$2.934      Greensburg
$3.082      Indiana
$3.093      Jeannette
$3.002      Kittanning
$3.001      Latrobe
$3.087      Meadville
$3.100      Mercer
$2.770      New Castle
$3.082      New Kensington
$3.099      Oil City
$3.045      Pittsburgh

$2.766      Sharon
$3.040      Uniontown
$3.099      Warren
$2.894      Washington

Trend Analysis:
At $2.86, the national average has decreased week-over-week for the first time since November of last year. Today’s average is two cents cheaper on the week. Since last Monday, 45 states also saw their averages decrease or no change at the pump.

Growing gasoline inventory levels and cheaper crude oil prices are putting downward pressure on pump prices for most motorists. Gasoline stocks built by 200,000 b/d, according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA). Moreover, refinery utilization hit 82% indicating that we could see a larger build of stocks this week, which could help keep pump prices in check.

At the close of Friday’s formal trading session, West Texas Intermediate increased to settle at $60.97. Prices fluctuated throughout the week from a low of $57.76 to a high of $61.55 in reaction to world news, including concerns of new European Union lock downs and tight vaccination supplies throughout local economies. Also, news of the stranded container ship in the Suez Canal affected the price of crude oil. While ships started to re-route last week, oil deliveries could be delayed. This is likely to have limited impact here as US oil production should be able to keep stateside supply balanced and in turn, prices stable until the canal clears.

In its report from last week, the EIA reported domestic gasoline demand was up by 174,000 b/d to 8.6 million b/d, which is just 222,000 b/d short of levels from one year ago when demand started to dip. Looking ahead, growing demand and the switchover to summer blend gasoline could be factors for a rise in gas prices, barring any unforeseen circumstances.

Motorists can find current gas prices nationwide, statewide, and countywide at GasPrices.AAA.com.

AAA East Central is a not-for-profit association with 73 local offices in Kentucky, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia serving 2.7 million members.  News releases are available at news.eastcentral.aaa.com.  Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

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