Drivers are seeing the lowest fuel prices for this time of year since the 2009 Great Recession.
This year, consumers experienced the lowest average fuel prices for the Christmas holiday since the 2009 recession, and pump prices remain around the $2 mark.
According to a report from AAA, 45 of the past 52 days have featured a fall in retail averages, and the average price as of Dec. 28 is $1.99, the lowest on this date since the Great Recession. On average, consumers are paying five cents less per gallon compared to a month ago, and 30 cents less compared to this date last year.
National fuel averages are expected to continue their decline into 2016, because supply should continue to outpace demand, and fuel prices typically fall during this time of year as motorists’ demand for gasoline decreases. However, the west coast has not been privy to the falling fuel prices, due to the supply issues in California, due to the earlier shutdown of ExxonMobil’s Torrance, Calif. refinery, which has sent prices higher in the western region, causing the national average to be higher than it would be otherwise.
Currently, 32 of the 50 states are recording averages below $2, with Missouri ($1.70) and Kansas ($1.75) posting the lowest national averages. Due to the lingering refinery issues, California ($2.83) and Hawaii ($2.69) have the most expensive gasoline market in the nation. Weekly comparisons have shown that prices have moved more than a nickel per gallon in both directions across the nation.
Motorists in 42 states and Washington D.C. have been benefiting from monthly fuel savings, with the largest decrease in fuel prices being in Montana with a fall of 28 cents. However, eight states have experienced an increase in fuel prices with the highest being 13 cents in California.