At $2.58, the national gas price is four cents more expensive on the week. Across the country, motorists in 47 states and Washington, D.C. have seen pump prices increase as much as 9 cents with the Great Lakes, Central, South and Southeastern states seeing the largest increases. The Energy Information Administration (EIA) reports an increase on the week in gasoline demand and inventories.
“Compared to the first few weeks of January last year, consumer gasoline demand is noticeably higher, which is surprising giving the frigid winter much of the country has experienced this month,” said Jeanette Casselano. “But demand isn’t the only factor driving prices up. Crude oil has been selling at very expensive rates the past few months. Those higher market prices are now trickling over to consumers at the pump.”
Nationally, gas prices are 10 cents more expensive than one month ago and 30 cents more than one year ago. On the month, Iowa (+18 cents) has seen the largest increase. Compared to one year ago, motorists in Indiana (+52 cents) top the list for the largest increase, while New Mexico (+15 cents) has seen the smallest increase in the country.
- The largest weekly changes in the top ten markets are: North Dakota (+9 cents), California (+8 cents), Missouri (+8 cents), Indiana (+6 cents), Kansas (+6 cents), Oklahoma (+6 cents), Minnesota (+6 cents), Mississippi (+5 cents), Alabama (+5 cents) and Alaska (-5 cents).
- The nation’s top ten least expensive markets are: South Carolina ($2.33), Texas ($2.34), Alabama ($2.35), Mississippi ($2.36), New Mexico ($2.36), Arkansas ($2.37), Arizona ($2.37), Missouri ($2.38), Louisiana ($2.40) and Tennessee ($2.40).
Motorists in the South and Southeast are seeing higher than average gas prices for this time of year. Four states are paying at least 25-cents more compared to January 2017: Georgia (+31 cents), Oklahoma (+29 cents), South Carolina (+29 cents), Alabama (+28 cents), Mississippi (+27 cents), Arkansas (+26 cents) and Louisiana (+25 cents).
Despite the year-over-year increases, the region is home to some of the cheapest gas prices in the country: South Carolina ($2.33), Texas ($2.34), Alabama ($2.35), Mississippi ($2.36), New Mexico ($2.36), Arkansas ($2.37) and Louisiana ($2.40). This is the first time since August 2017 that South Carolina has claimed the cheapest gas in the country and region.
Gasoline inventories in the region dipped by 814,000 bbl on the week. Total inventories measure at 83.5 million bbl, which is 2.5 million bbl below levels this time last year, according to the EIA.