Charlotte, N.C. (June 14, 2021) – Crude oil has increased to its highest price since October 2018 and is now $23/bbl more expensive than it was this past January, leaving little-to-no effect on pump prices in the Carolinas.
“Although the price of crude oil is trending more expensive, gas prices are still stable right now,” said Tiffany Wright, spokesperson, AAA – The Auto Club Group in the Carolinas. “If crude production increases, there’s a possibility gas prices will continue to decrease.”
On the week, North Carolina’s gas price average decreased by 1 cent, currently sitting at $2.87 – this is 4 cents cheaper than a month ago but 89 cents more expensive than last year. South Carolina’s gas price average also decreased by 1 cent on the week, currently sitting at $2.79 – this is 7 cents cheaper than a month ago but 94 cents more expensive than last year. South Carolina is also a part of the nation’s top 10 least expensive markets.
Today’s national gas price average is $3.08, which is three cents more on the week, a nickel more on the month and 98 cents more on the year. The latest increases at the pump are attributed to the steady climb in crude prices, especially as demand decreased (−670,000 b/d) and supply increased (+7 million bbl), according to the latest Energy Information Administration (EIA) data. The decrease in demand was surprising as it reflects the Memorial Day holiday, which was expected to inject higher gasoline demand.
Market analyst are keeping a close eye on global supply and demand levels. They are especially eager to see if the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), and its allies including Russia, follow through with production increases next month. This move could help put downward pressure on crude prices and, in turn, push gas prices less expensive. However, motorists likely would not see any impact at the pump until mid-to-late July.
After crude prices crossed the $70/bbl threshold last week, WTI continued to increase due to optimism that vaccine rollout will continue to help crude demand recover and after the U.S. Consumer Price Index showed that prices increased by 5% in May, compared to last year, a larger increase than expected. The new report is fanning market concerns that inflation is driving prices higher. Additionally, crude prices were bolstered by EIA’s latest report revealing that total domestic crude supplies decreased by 5.2 million bbl to 474 million bbl last week. For this week, crude prices could continue to rise if EIA’s report shows another inventory decline.
For updated state and metro prices log on to https://gasprices.aaa.com/
About AAA – The Auto Club Group
The Auto Club Group (ACG) is the second largest AAA club in North America with more than 14 million members across 14 U.S. states, the province of Quebec and two U.S. territories. ACG and its affiliates provide members with roadside assistance, insurance products, banking and financial services, travel offerings and more. ACG belongs to the national AAA federation with more than 62 million members in the United States and Canada. AAA’s mission is to protect and advance freedom of mobility and improve traffic safety. For more information, get the AAA Mobile app, visit AAA.com, and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.