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Aug-05-2014 18:30printcomments

Salem, Oregon Gas Prices Continue to Drop

The Medford-Ashland area saw the biggest drop in the state, with average gas prices falling 5-cents a gallon.

Salem Oregon Gas Prices
The average price for a gallon of regular unleaded gas continues to fall in the Salem-Keizer area according to AAA. Photo: Kevin Hays Salem-News.com

(SALEM, Ore. ) - The national average for regular unleaded drops below $3.50 per gallon this week for the first time since March 12, and is at its lowest level for early August since 2010.

"For the week, the national average drops three cents to $3.49 a gallon while Oregon’s average dips two cents to $3.91.” AAA Oregon/Idaho Public Affairs Director Marie Dodds said.

In the Salem-Keizer area, the average gas price fell 2-cents to $3.88; in Portland-Vancouver the price fell a penny to $3.91; in Eugene-Springfield the price dropped 3-cents to $3.88; while the Medford-Ashland area saw their prices fall a whopping 5-cents to $3.90.

The Oregon average is at its lowest price since mid-June. Drivers in the Pacific states continue to pay the highest prices in the country per gallon for regular unleaded. The top five most expensive states are Hawaii, Alaska, California, Oregon and Washington.

Oregon is one of 40 states and Washington D.C. where gas prices fell over the last seven days, providing drivers a bit more relief at the pumps.

Average prices increased in 10 states, led by Ohio (+10 cents) and Kentucky (+5 cents). Price swings are unfortunately nothing new for Midwesterners, as their states have consistently been among the most volatile in the country.

Prices in the region often increase and decrease quickly. While prices have risen slightly over the last week in parts of the Midwest due to refinery problems, many of these same states also lead the nation in month-over-month price decreases: Michigan (-30 cents), Kentucky (-24 cents), Illinois (-24 cents) and Minnesota (-24 cents).

In the last month, drivers in 48 states, including Oregon, and Washington, D.C. have seen prices drop with only Wyoming (+2 cents) and Idaho (+4 cents) bucking the trend.

The year-over-year price at the pump is lower in all but four states: Nevada (+9 cents), Colorado (+6 cents), Oregon (+5 cents) and Alaska (+ 4 cents).

Last summer, many Midwestern states were in the midst of rollercoaster gas prices due to regional refinery glitches. As a result, of the 46 states and Washington, D.C. where retail prices have dropped, the Midwestern states of Minnesota (-26 cents), Kansas (-26 cents) and Nebraska (-25 cents) lead the nation in year-over-year discounts.

The national average has fallen 21 cents below its year-to-date high of $3.70 a gallon on April 28. Oregon’s average has fallen seven cents from its year-to-date high of $3.98 on July 3.

Oil market watchers continue to monitor the Middle East and northern Africa, paying special attention to growing tensions in Eastern Europe.

United States and European powers last week announced coordinated sanctions targeting Russia’s long-term ability to develop new oil resources, in response to the country’s involvement in the insurgency in eastern Ukraine.

Some have suggested that the latest prohibitions eventually could impact the global supply of crude oil by denying exports of oil industry equipment and restricting Russian state-owned banks from accessing European capital markets.

This week there are two states with regular unleaded at or above $4 a gallon, same as last week: Hawaii and Alaska.

For the 28th week in a row, there are no states with an average below $3 per gallon, and no states within a dime of this mark for the 24th week in a row.

Hawaii has the most expensive gas in the country for the 93rd consecutive week at $4.34, followed by Alaska at $4.10, California at $3.95 (down four cents and third for the sixth week in a row), Oregon at $3.91 (down two cents and fourth for the second consecutive week), and Washington at $3.91 (down two cents and fifth for the second week in a row).

Idaho is ninth for the second consecutive week at $3.78 (same price as last week). South Carolina has the cheapest gas in the country for the seventh week in a row at $3.22 a gallon (down four cents).

Diesel prices are ticking down in most markets. The national average slips a penny this week to $3.83 a gallon this week.

Oregon’s average also dips a penny to $3.93. Diesel is at or above $4 a gallon in seven states, down from eight last week. Hawaii is most expensive at $4.86, followed by Alaska at $4.23, Connecticut at $4.23, New York at $4.21, and California at $4.11 (down a penny).

Washington is sixth after six weeks in seventh at $4.02 (same price as last week). Idaho is 10th up from 13th at $3.95 (down a penny). Oregon is 16th down from 14th last week. A year ago, the national average for diesel was $3.88 and Oregon's was $3.93.

Information in this story provided by AAA Oregon and AAA Fuel Gauge Report




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