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State, national gas prices rise as gasoline stock declines

Staff Report • Apr 1, 2019 at 10:00 PM

NASHVILLE — Tennessee gas prices are continuing their march upward, though not as sharply as in previous weeks.

Tennessee drivers are paying an average of $2.47 per gallon for regular unleaded, AAA reported. Monday's state average is 3 cents more than a week ago and 26 cents more than this time last month but only 1 cent higher than this time last year.

The national average has increased 44 cents since New Year’s Day, leading to Monday’s average of $2.69. While that is 7 cents more expensive than last week and 27 cents more than last month, it is only 4 cents more expensive than last year, according to AAA.

“Three months ago motorists could find gas for less than $2.50 at 78 percent of gas stations,” said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson, in a press release. “Today, you can only find gas for that price at one-third of stations, which is likely giving sticker shock to motorists across the country.

“Gasoline stocks have been steadily decreasing since early February, causing spikes at the pump that are likely to continue for the coming weeks.”

Most expensive gas prices in the state

• Jackson ($2.54)

• Nashville ($2.51)

• Memphis ($2.49)

Least expensive gas prices in the state

• Cleveland ($2.39)

• Chattanooga ($2.40)

• Johnson City ($2.43)

What about oil?

At the close of Friday’s formal trading session on the New York Mercantile Exchange, West Texas Intermediate crude increased 84 cents to settle at $60.14, the highest closing price seen this year, according to AAA.

Oil prices increased last week, helping to establish solid price gains for the first quarter of 2019. The market expects further tightening in global crude availability as a result of OPEC’s 1.2 million barrel-per-day production cut and the U.S. imposing sanctions on Iranian and Venezuelan crude exports.

Prices will likely continue their ascent this week, AAA reported, with the combined effect of the tightening in the global crude oil market overshadowing concerns that the global economy is slowing. This could decrease global crude demand during the second half of 2019.

Crude prices rallied despite new Energy Information Administration data that showed total domestic crude inventories increased by 2.8 million barrels to 442.3 million barrels last week.

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

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