From staff reports
The average price for a gallon of gasoline in the tri-county area this week is again above the western Pennsylvania average, which rose to $4.05, according to AAA East Central’s Gas Price Report.
The price increase throughout the area ranged from 3 cents to 7 cents per gallon.
However, Venango continues to be among the statewide counties with the lowest average prices.
Elsewhere in the region, the average price of gas in Mercer County is $4.07; last week it was $4.01. In Crawford County, the average price of gas is $4.16; last week it was $4.10.
Among county retail prices statewide, AAA reports, the average prices in both Venango and Mercer again rank among the second lowest ($4.013 to $4.097) in a ranking system that divides counties into five groups in relation to average cost.
That same five-tiered ranking has both Clarion and Forest among counties with the second highest average prices ($4.122 to $4.140), and Crawford among counties with the highest average prices ($4.141 to $4.226).
The average price of gas in western Pennsylvania last week was $4.02. At this time last year it was $3.59.
The current national average price is $3.77, which is about 3 cents lower than last week, 13 cents less than a month ago but 36 cents more than a year ago.
The main reason behind this week’s cost of gasoline has been fluctuations in the cost of crude oil.
At the close of Friday’s formal trading session, West Texas Intermediate increased by $2.49 to settle at $88.96.
Although crude prices rose at the end of the week due to a weakening dollar, prices dropped earlier in the week after the Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported total domestic commercial crude stocks increased by 4 million barrels. The inventory rise could mean demand is falling due to growing economic concerns.
According to data from EIA, gasoline demand increased from 8.66 million barrels per day to 9.01 million barrels per day last week. Total domestic gasoline stocks decreased by nearly 1 million barrels to 205.7 million barrels.
Motorists can find current gas prices nationwide, statewide and countywide at GasPrices.AAA.com.
For more local news, visit TheDerrick.com.