California gasoline prices at two-year high
September 8, 2017
• Blame it on Harvey, some say
• “Concern about the overall national supply chain has caused local drivers to see a two-week price increase”
Despite receiving no gasoline supplies from the Hurricane Harvey-ravaged Gulf Coast, California is seeing a double-digit weekly increase in pump prices that has lifted them to levels not seen since September 2015, according to price surveys Friday.
“The national gas price average has risen by 34 cents in the past two weeks to $2.67 a gallon – the worst national gas price spike since Hurricane Katrina in 2005, which pushed the U.S. price average up by about 45 cents a gallon to a high point of $3.06,” says Jeffrey Spring, a spokesman for the Automobile Club of Southern California.
“Even though California receives no supply from Gulf Coast refineries, concern about the overall national supply chain has caused local drivers to see a two-week price increase of about 17 cents a gallon.” Mr. Spring says. “However, wholesale prices locally have dropped in the last few days and as more Texas refineries return to production, we expect to see pump prices come back down provided no other disruption occurs.”
California’s statewide average price on Friday, September 8, is $3.149, up 11 cents from one week ago, according to AAA. The national average is $2.674, an increase of 15.5 cents since last Friday, according to the AAA.
Today’s Regional Prices
Following are the Central Valley average prices for Friday, September 8, driving from south to north, as reported by the American Automobile Association, with last week’s (September 1) averages in parentheses and [August 25] prices in brackets:
• Bakersfield, $3.087 ($2.970) [$2.960]
• Visalia-Porterville, $3.117 ($3.010) [$2.959]
• Fresno, $3.139 ($3.017) [$2.973]
• Merced, $3.127 ($2.972) [$2.926]
• Modesto, $2.973 ($2.852) [$2.796]
• Stockton-Lodi, $3.027 ($2.905) [$2.853]
• Sacramento, $3.052 ($2.934) [$2.884]
• Yolo, $3.005 ($2.894) [$2.853]
• Yuba City, $2.939 ($2.826) [$2.743]
• Chico, $2.941 ($2.849) [$2.787]
The market average price for self-serve regular gasoline in the Los Angeles-Long Beach area on September 8 is $3.191, an increase of 11.1 cents since last Friday. In San Diego, the average price is $3.158, an increase of 11.5 cents over the past seven days, the AAA says.
California’s highest average price on September 8 is in San Luis Obispo at $3.299. That is an increase of 9.7 cents over the past week, the AAA says.
Again this week, Yuba City has the state’s lowest market average price. This week’s average of $2.939 is 11.3 cents higher than one week ago, the AAA figures show.
California’s lowest reported price for a gallon of gas is $2.579, which is 14 cents higher than the lowest spotted a week ago by the volunteers for the price comparison website GasBuddy.com. But there is a bit of good news: The price is found in three locations – in Chico at a big box store, in Farmersville, at a convenience store and in Paradise, also at a convenience store.
What could be the lowest price in the country for a gallon of gas on September 8 is found in Del City and Sayre in Oklahoma, where $1.999 buys a gallon of gasoline at independent stations, according to GasBuddy.com. That price is 13 cents higher than last week's apparent lower price, which was found in Moore, Oklahoma.
GasBuddy bases its figures on reports from volunteer “price spotters” reporting specific locations in the U.S. and Canada. They are not independently confirmed.
The AAA’s prices are market averages for self-serve regular grade (87 octane) gasoline. They are calculated daily from credit card purchases and compiled by the Oil Price Information Service and Wex Inc., formerly known as Wright Express.
Not every station is surveyed and not every market is included in either report. Both price surveys note that there can be wide variations within any market.