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Gas prices drop as oil prices plunge, AAA says

Staff Report • Feb 12, 2018 at 8:00 PM

NASHVILLE — Motorists in Tennessee enjoyed a slight dip in gas prices last week as energy prices took a nosedive on the stock market, AAA reported.

Tennessee gas prices declined 2 cents over the last week. Sunday's state average of $2.39 is 9 cents less than a month ago and 34 cents more than this time last year, according to AAA.

“Gas prices have the potential to drop 10-15 cents based on what happened last week,” said Mark Jenkins, AAA spokesman, in a press release. “However, refinery maintenance season is fast approaching and could spoil this big break for motorists.

“Every year, from February to April, reduced refinery output and the switch to summer-blend gasoline normally causes gas prices to rise 30-70 cents. Additional drops in oil prices would help soften the impact maintenance season has on prices at the pump. Expect volatility at the pump as these forces collide.”

Most expensive gas prices in the state

• Johnson City ($2.42)

• Jackson ($2.42)

• Nashville ($2.42)

Least expensive gas prices in the state

• Cleveland ($2.35)

• Knoxville ($2.35)

• Chattanooga ($2.36)

U.S. oil production reaches record highs

AAA reported that crude oil plunged to its lowest price of the year last week, dramatically reducing the cost of producing gasoline. Friday's closing price of $59.20 per barrel is down $6 per barrel from the week before and is the lowest daily settlement since December.

The downturn for energy prices began on Wednesday, AAA reported, when the EIA's weekly report revealed significant gains in domestic production and inventories. Domestic oil production surged to 10.25 million barrels per day, the first time U.S. output exceeded 10 million barrels a day since 1970.

As crude production roared higher, U.S. crude inventories swelled by 1.9 million barrels. This inventory growth was one of the main reasons why oil prices dropped, according to AAA.

To view daily gas price averages, visit GasPrices.AAA.com.

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