Gas prices continue gradual decline

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gas price latestThe price at the pump continued its gradual decline this week, with the possibility that gas could move into the $2 a gallon vicinity later in the year.

On Monday,  The AAA and  Gas Buddy websites  reported prices had fallen below to $2,50 a gallon along Capitol Trail-Kirkwood Highway east of Newark and in the Dover area. GasBuddy reported prices fell as low as $2.43 in the state.

The nationwide price at the pump on Friday was $2.73 a gallon, a figure that is down to prices seen in 2010 and down seven cents from the 2015 peak price.

The national average is 82 cents per gallon less than a year ago, Wilmington-based AAA Mid-Atlantic reported.

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U.S. oil inventories are high and the prospect of increased Iranian crude shipments increased concerns about expanding supplies even as demand is waning, AAA Mid-Atlantic reported.

Another  trend driving lower oil prices is the performance of the U.S. dollar, which hit a nearly four-month high. This may hurt demand abroad as it makes U.S. oil more expensive for buyers paying in foreign currencies.

Demand was up for gasoline, the  Energy Information Administration (EIA) noted in its weekly  report

Crude oil inventories saw a 2.5 million barrel  increase  to 463.9 million barrels, levels not seen for this time of year in at least 80 years.

“Contrary to rising summer temperatures, prices at the pump have been on the decline (albeit slight) since hitting a seasonal peak in mid-June,” said Jana L. Tidwell, manager of Public and Government Affairs for AAA Mid-Atlantic. “This is welcome news for motorists planning summer road trips in the coming weeks.”

Following the nuclear deal that was reached last week between Iran and China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom, the United States and Germany, the prospect for Iranian crude oil to return to the global market also remains top of mind for market watchers.

Although the timeline for the possible return of more shipments of oil from Iran remains in question, downward pressure is expected to remain on global oil prices as a result of the news.

Motorists  can look forward to gas prices possibly inching closer to the $2  per gallon mark later this year, barring a global crisis or a damaging  hurricane in the Gulf

AAA has online tools for motorist that include:

  • Fuel Price Finder (com/fuelfinder) locates the lowest fuel price in your area.
  • Fuel Cost Calculator (AAA.com) helps budget travel expenses.
  • TripTik Mobile (com/mobile) plots fuel prices along your travel route.

 

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