VIRGINIA BEACH — The national average pump price continued its recent downward trend, dipping three cents over the past week to hit $3.76, according to AAA Tidewater.
According to AAA, this is due to “tepid” domestic gas demand, fluctuating global oil prices and lower West Coast gas prices.
“The recent period of tight oil inventory pushing prices higher on the West Coast is over as regional refineries completed needed maintenance,” said Ryan Adcock, AAA Tidewater public relations specialist. “The average gas price in California, while still high compared to the rest of the country, is 85 cents cheaper than its peak in early October. This drop has taken pressure off the national average price.”
According to data from the Energy Information Administration, gas demand rose slightly from 8.68 million to 8.93 million barrels per day last week, with total domestic gasoline stocks decreasing from 209.4 million to 207.9 million barrels. While demand is up slightly, it is still nearly 400,000 barrels lower than the same time last year, with wavering oil prices and low demand contributing to the national average prices moving downward.
Monday’s national average of $3.76 is three cents lower than a month ago and 36 cents more than a year ago.
Locally, the gas price average for the Commonwealth decreased to $3.50, two cents lower than a week ago and 18 cents higher than a month ago. In Hampton Roads, prices increased one cent to $3.51, 27 cents higher than last month and 23 cents higher than a year ago.