Charlotte, N.C. (March 15, 2021) – Following last month’s winter storm, gas price averages have jumped 10 to 12 cents in the Carolinas and prices will likely continue to increase this week, following the EIA’s latest weekly reports showing a second week of major decline in gasoline stocks and a substantial increase in U.S. demand.
“Motorists are paying a lot more to fill up compared to February,” said Tiffany Wright, spokesperson, AAA – The Auto Club Group in the Carolinas. “With increased demand and tighter gasoline supplies, we are seeing more expensive pump prices with little relief in the upcoming weeks.”
North Carolina’s current gas price average sits at $2.67, seeing a 10-cent increase on the week. This is 32 cents more expensive than a month ago and 59 cents more expensive than last year. South Carolina’s current gas price average sits at $2.63, seeing a 12-cent increase on the week. This is 35 cents more expensive than a month ago and 65 cents more expensive than last year. South Carolina also made the nation’s top 10 largest weekly increases, as well as the nation’s top 10 least expensive markets.
The national gas price average jumped nearly 40 cents since the winter storm, now sitting at $2.86. This is 9 cents more expensive on the week.
For the week ending March 5, the EIA reports that gas stocks decreased by nearly 12 million bbl to 231 million bbl, as demand increased last week. The current demand measurement of 8.73 million b/d is the highest since the end of November 2020, which coincidentally was the same month we saw stocks as low as they are today.
Amid tightening supply and increasing demand, the good news is that the price of crude, which accounts for more than half of the price at the pump, showed signs of stability on the week – fluctuating between $64 to $66/bbl. If crude sustains at this level, especially as refinery utilization increases, the jumps at the pump are likely not to be so substantial by April.
Although the price of crude decreased on Friday, due to a stronger dollar, crude prices rose earlier in the week to $66/bbl with market optimism about crude demand recovery. Crude prices increased despite EIA’s latest weekly report revealing that crude inventories increased by 13.8 million bbl to 498.4 million bbl. For this week, crude prices are likely to continue moving higher if optimism grows.
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 60 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.