Motorists feel post-Independence Day energy price relief

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Motorists are getting some relief in pump prices for gas and diesel fuel.

During a Friday appearance on MetroNews “Talkline,” senior petroleum analyst with, Patrick DeHaan said prices have been falling for the last 5 to 10 days.

“That’s a trend that should continue. We’re down about 6-cents a gallon in the last week across the state,” DeHaan said. “The national average is down a little more than that at about 10-cents a gallon, so finally some relief and that could continue for a week or two or even beyond that.

Patrick DeHaan

The price of diesel fuel has dropped about 15-cents a gallon in the last month.

A report from the Energy Information Administration said last gasoline inventories were up 8.2 million barrels compared with use of 2.8 million barrels for the week. Currently gasoline production is averaging 10.3 million barrels each day.

“Minor improvement in gasoline supply, gasoline inventories are up for two out of the last three weeks and there are concerns about an economic slow down brewing after the Federal Reserve raised interest rates by the largest amount in decades,” DeHaan said.

In the last week, the price of Brent and West Texas Intermediate Crude oil briefly plunged below the $100-per barrel price, but has rebounded above the triple digit mark. According to DeHaan, the market reacted to fears of a global recession that could slash demand.

“Gasoline demand is about 7 to 10 percent below record levels for this time of year,” DeHaan said. “It’s also about 5 to 7 percent below normal levels for this time of year, so we are seeing a drop in demand.”

For the future, Hehaan expects elevated prices for gasoline and diesel fuel will continue as long as the Russian invasion of Ukraine continues. But, DeHaan believes prices will continue to ease into the fall.

“We’ll see a little relief, but I think the new normal might be somewhere in the ballpark of $3.50 to $4.50 a gallon,” DeHaan said. “But, we have a little more downward room to go and I think we’ll see a little more relief this fall.”

Because of the different grades and quality of crude oil some oil is exported while oil of a higher quality is imported. According to DeHaan, last week the United States imported 6.8 million barrels while 2.6 million barrels were exported.

“There’s a lot that has been said about energy independence, but we’ve always imported oil and we’ve always exported oil- that hasn’t changed under any president,” DeHaan said.

For the most up to date gas price information click here.

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