Gas Cheap, Relatively Speaking, AAA Finds
WASHINGTON, May 19 (UPI) — While gas prices continue to rise ahead of the Memorial Day holiday, U.S. travelers are paying nearly a $1 less per gallon of gas year-on-year, AAA said.
The motor club reports a national average price for a gallon of regular unleaded at $2.70 for Tuesday, up about five cents, or nearly 2 percent, from last week. More than half of all U.S. states reported an average price below the $2 per gallon mark in late 2014, though prices have been on a steady rise for most of the year.
AAA finds the national average price for gasoline has increased for 33 of the past 35 days and is at a new high for the year. The motor club finds the increase in gasoline prices, however, is not expected to curb travel for the upcoming holiday weekend.
More than 33 million travelers are expected to hit the roads for Memorial Day, the highest in 10 years and up 5.3 percent from last year, AAA said.
“Gas prices may not change all that much by the holiday weekend, which would result in the cheapest Memorial Day gas prices in at least five years,” it said last week.
In its latest report, AAA finds drivers are experiencing “significant” savings at the pump when compared with last year. Today’s average price is nearly $1, or about 25 percent, less than they were on this date in 2014.
Gasoline prices have largely mirrored advances in the crude oil market. Oil prices, which represent more than half the price at the pump, are up more than 30 percent since the start of the year.
“Volatility will likely continue to characterize the global market in the near term as traders closely watch the balance between supply and demand,” AAA said. “In particular, more expensive crude could lead to an increase in production and supply, which could put a ceiling on the current rally in price.”