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

The Week

Maryland drivers are seeing no relief at the pump this week as oil prices increased more than $2.08 over last week. Maryland’s gas average is seven cents lower than the national average at $2.84 per gallon, but is five cents higher than last week and three cents more than last month. Today’s average in Maryland is 38 cents more than year ago prices. Typically, motorists see prices drop at this time of year as gasoline demand decreases and cheaper-to-produce winter blend gasoline is available, but not this year.

 

Today’s national gas price average is $2.91, which is up three cents in the last week, up seven cents in the last month, and 39 cents higher than this time last year.

 

At the close of NYMEX trading yesterday, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil settled at $74.33 per barrel, down $2.08 from last week.  U.S. sanctions against Iran, set to go into effect Nov. 4, and Energy Secretary Rick Perry's recent dismissal of the idea of additional Strategic Petroleum Reserve sales, helped boost oil prices to nearly-four-year highs on Wednesday. While markets are still focused on the prospect of tight global supply as U.S. sanctions on Iran kick in, recent reports that Russia and Saudi Arabia have reached an agreement to increase production might help ease supply concerns.

 

CURRENT AND PAST GAS PRICE AVERAGES 

Regular Unleaded Gasoline

 

10/5/18

 

Week Ago

 

Month Ago

 

Year Ago

 

National

 

$2.91

 

$2.88

 

$2.84

 

$2.52

 

Maryland

 

$2.84

 

$2.79

 

$2.81

 

$2.46

 

Annapolis

 

$2.80

 

$2.76

 

$2.77

 

$2.38

 

Baltimore

 

$2.82

 

$2.77

 

$2.78

 

$2.42

 

Cumberland

 

$2.95

 

$2.89

 

$2.95

 

$2.50

 

Frederick

 

$2.85

 

$2.82

 

$2.82

 

$2.50

 

Hagerstown

 

$2.91

 

$2.86

 

$2.87

 

$2.60

 

Salisbury

 

$2.76

 

$2.69

 

$2.72

 

$2.30

 

Washington Suburbs

(MD only)

 

$2.92

 

$2.90

 

$2.91

 

$2.60

 

Crude Oil

 

$74.33

per barrel

(Thursday, 10/4/18)

 

$73.25

per barrel

(Friday, 9/28/18)

 

$68.72

per barrel

(9/5/18)

 

$50.81

per barrel

(10/5/17)

 

 

 

The Weekend

“Gas prices are feeling more like summer than fall,” said Ragina Cooper Averella, Public and Government Affairs Manager for AAA Mid-Atlantic. “This time of year, motorists are accustomed to seeing prices drop steadily, but due to continued global supply and demand concerns, as well as more expensive crude oil prices, motorists are not seeing the typically seasonal price relief at the pump.”

 

The Week Ahead

Prices at the pump are climbing close to their highest level in four years (2014), due in part to the increased price of crude oil.  Market watchers are unsure how long the crude oil price rally will continue as multiple factors manipulate pricing, leading to questions regarding the future price of gasoline. U.S. sanctions against Iran will take full effect on November 4.  While mid-week news of a verbal commitment by Russia and Saudi Arabia to increase output of crude surfaced, it is unknown whether the amount of oil produced would replace what is lost through the Iranian sanctions. Markets also took into consideration the U.S. government’s termination of a 1955 agreement of amity between the U.S. and Iran – the cancellation means the path is now clear to cut off Iranian oil exports.

 

    

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, October 12, 2018

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AAA provides automotive, travel and insurance services to 57 million members nationwide and more than 975,000 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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