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Gas prices slide after rising last week

Staff Report • Jan 29, 2019 at 9:00 AM

NASHVILLE — Gas prices in Tennessee are drifting lower again after rising 6 cents last week.

Sunday's state average of $2.06 is down 1 cent from Friday, AAA reported, but remains 5 cents more than this time last week and 2 cents more than a month ago.

The average driver in Tennessee is still paying about 34 cents per gallon less than this time last year and about 67 cents per gallon less than last year's peak price.

“Gas prices are slipping lower due to an oversupply of gasoline,” said Mark Jenkins, AAA spokesman, in a press release. “Gasoline supplies are at record highs, according to the latest report from the EIA. That's because refineries had been running hard to meet seasonal demand for both heating oil and exports.

“In doing so, they were left with more gasoline than there was demand for. State averages could drop another 3-5 cents in the next 7-10 days as a result.”

Most expensive gas prices in the state

• Nashville ($2.13)

• Cleveland ($2.07)

• Jackson ($2.05)

Least expensive gas prices in the state

• Chattanooga ($1.99)

• Kingsport-Bristol ($2.01)

• Knoxville ($2.02)

Across the nation

The national average price for gasoline rose 3 cents last week, but AAA reported that prices are now moving lower. Sunday's average of $2.26 per gallon is 1 cent less than Friday, 2 cents less than this time last week and 32 cents less than this time last year.

Americans are saving nearly $5 when filling a 15-gallon tank of gas compared to what they paid a year ago, according to AAA. The national average is 71 cents less than last year's high and only fractions of a penny more than what drivers paid on Jan. 1.

What about oil?

Oil prices held relatively steady last week, AAA reported. Friday's settlement of $53.69 per barrel for West Texas Intermediate crude was 11 cents less than the week before. Meanwhile, gasoline futures dropped 6 cents on the New York Mercantile Exchange, and wholesale prices followed suit.

AAA predicts crude prices could face upward pressure this week as a result of political turmoil in Venezuela. The once oil-rich nation sits on the largest oil reserves in the world, but production has declined during its prolonged economic struggles. Venezuela now faces potential sanctions from the United States on crude exports.

Sanctions are being considered as a method to remove Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro from power. This could also result in tightening global crude supplies and higher prices.

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

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