Christine Delise
Sr. Public Relations Specialist, MD
O: (410) 616-1900 (ext. 4361153)
C: (443) 244-7253
cdelise@aaamidatlantic.com

TOWSON, MD (September 22, 2017)

 

The Week

Prices in the Mid-Atlantic region continue to drop slowly but will not drop as quickly as they rose following Hurricane Harvey’s landfall last month. In the wake of Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma, refineries were shut down and gasoline supplies were drained, serving drivers with a one-two punch at the pump. Gulf Coast refineries are slowly coming back online and operating at reduced rates but it will likely be a few more weeks before those regions are back to normal operations.  

 

Typically, the drop in demand at the end of the summer driving season, brings a drop in fuel prices in September. The switch over to a winter-blend of gasoline (Sept. 15) has also added to the decrease in prices. Today’s national average is $2.60, a drop of four cents in the last week, yet 26 cents higher than one month ago and 38 cents higher than one year ago.

 

Maryland’s average of $2.58 is a decrease of 10 cents compared to last week, yet 28 cents more than month ago prices and 31 cents more than this time last year.

 

CURRENT AND PAST GAS PRICE AVERAGES

Regular Unleaded Gasoline

 

 

9/22/17

 

Week Ago

 

Month Ago

 

Year Ago

 

National

 

$2.60

 

$2.64

 

$2.34

 

$2.22

 

Maryland

 

$2.58

 

$2.68

 

$2.30

 

$2.27

 

Baltimore

 

$2.55

 

$2.66

 

$2.28

 

$2.27

 

Cumberland

 

$2.61

 

$2.69

 

$2.38

 

$2.18

 

Hagerstown

 

$2.75

 

$2.77

 

$2.32

 

$2.26

 

Salisbury

 

$2.43

 

$2.57

 

$2.18

 

$2.27

 

Washington Suburbs (MD only)

 

$2.64

 

$2.72

 

$2.34

 

$2.27

 

Crude Oil

 

$50.55

per barrel

at Thursday’s close, 9/21/17

 

$49.89

per barrel

(Thursday, 9/14/17)

 

$47.59

per barrel

(8/14/17)

 

$43.30

per barrel

(9/21/16)

 

 

At the close of NYMEX trading Thursday, WTI crude oil settled at $50.55 per barrel, 66 cents higher than the previous week’s closing price. Oil prices have not spiked significantly like gasoline prices have, following Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. Shale oil production in the United States is reaching record highs, putting a damper on the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries’ (OPEC) attempts to reduce the glut of oil in world markets. As refineries shut by storm damage work to reach pre-storm capacity levels, oil inventories may decline in the coming weeks as refineries turn to storage tanks to meet demand needs.  

 

The Weekend

“Mid-Atlantic drivers will be paying less to fill up in the coming days and weeks as the situation with refineries, pipelines and gasoline deliveries improves,” said Ragina Cooper Averella, Manager of Public and Government Affairs for AAA Mid-Atlantic. “Consumers may not be impressed with the speed at which prices are dropping but they should feel confident that they will see lower prices moving into the fall.”   

 

The Week Ahead

As the Gulf Coast and Florida slowly recover from Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, many Americans are turning their attention to Hurricane Maria. Long-range weather models show Hurricane Maria heading northward over the western Atlantic next week, with little to no threat to the U.S. East Coast. Hurricane season ends November 30.

 

Members from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies will meet in Vienna on September 28 to reportedly consider further extending output cuts in an attempt to reduce a glut in oil supplies. Some analysts don’t expect a final decision until OPEC’s next official gathering in November.

 

AAA has a variety of resources to help motorists save on fuel:

 

  • AAA's Member Rewards Visa® Credit Card (AAA.com/financial/AAAvisa.htm) accumulates double points on fuel purchases.

     

    Next Weekend Gas Watch: Friday, September 29, 2017

 

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Mailing Address:
8600 LaSalle Road, Ste 639
Towson, MD 21286

AAA provides automotive, travel and insurance services to 57 million members nationwide and more than 937,000 members in Maryland.  AAA advocates for the safety and mobility of its members and has been committed to outstanding road service for more than 100 years.  The not-for-profit, fully tax-paying member organization works on behalf of motorists, who can now map a route, find local gas prices, discover discounts, book a hotel and track their roadside assistance service with the AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android.  For more information, visit AAA.com.

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