The National And Oregon Average Gas Price Slightly Down

Portland, Ore. — Lower crude oil prices and a drop in U.S. demand for gas are helping to push pump prices lower in 47 states, including Oregon. According to AAA Oregon/Idaho, the Oregon average gas price dropped about half a cent to $4.11, while the national average for regular gas drops seven cents to $3.53 per gallon for the week. The national average has peaked for the spring, and it topped out at nearly $3.69 on April 20, declining since then. However, it is too early to tell if the Oregon average has peaked.

Crude oil prices slid last week, dropping below $70 per barrel on market concerns that rising interest rates will tip the U.S. economy into a recession. Crude oil is the primary ingredient in gasoline and diesel, so pump prices are impacted by crude prices on the global markets. Pump prices are also affected by the transition to summer-blend fuel, which is more environmentally friendly but more expensive to produce.

U.S. refineries often go off-line or have reduced output ahead of seasonal switchovers so that maintenance can occur. Refinery operations have restarted over the past few weeks, and some planned work will extend into June.

Demand for gasoline in the U.S. dropped significantly from 9.51 to 8.62 million barrels per day for the week ending April 28. This is lower than 8.86 million barrels per day from a year ago. The decrease in demand alongside an increase in stocks has contributed to pushing pump prices lower. If demand remains low, drivers will likely continue to see pump prices decline.