Oil prices continued to decline, dragging with them wholesale and retail gasoline prices.
The latest losses accelerated following US data showing crude and gasoline inventories rose unexpectedly last week, and OPEC+ said it would increase its oil production target by 100,000 barrels per day. Light sweet crude fell nearly 4% to just above $90 a barrel. It’s the first time oil has closed below $91 a barrel since Russia invaded Ukraine.
The Energy Information Administration (EIA) also said domestic jet and motor fuel consumption was down 19% and 7.6%, respectively, from the previous week. New York gasoline futures fell nearly 5% to $2.91 a gallon, the lowest point since late February.
The drop in crude oil prices led to a substantial drop in the retail price of gasoline. After hitting record highs in June, average gasoline prices have fallen for 50 straight days and are now approaching $4 a gallon. The national average price for regular unleaded gasoline is now $4.14 per gallon. This is down 17% from the previous high of $5.02 per gallon set on June 14.
Whether gas prices continue to fall could depend on several factors, including potential hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico that force refineries offline, as well as unforeseen disruptions from the conflict between Russia and Ukraine. Analysts say the price of gas could drop below $4 a gallon over the next two weeks if there are no disruptions.
“Crude oil futures, according to the CME Group, show prices trading between $85 and $95 per barrel via December contracts, indicating that traders believe oil prices will remain relatively flat for the future. rest of the year. If correct, then gas prices should continue to decline proportionately,” said Caleb Silver, editor of Investopedia.