National average of fuel levels off after five-week climb

By Land Line staff | 3/3/2014

For the first time in five weeks, the Energy Information Administration is not announcing another increase in the national average cost for a gallon of diesel – although the decline of one-tenth of a cent isn’t much of a drop.

After five weeks of steady increase, the national average for a gallon of diesel has leveled off at $4.016 per gallon for the time being. That marks a one-tenth of a cent decrease from the Feb. 24 national average of $4.017.

The EIA reports that the national average price for fuel is basically remaining at its highest point in 23 weeks. The average price on Monday, March 3, was approximately 11.4 cents per gallon below the national average from one year ago.

The EIA reporting regions were a mixed bag with six regions reporting increases and only four reporting decreases in their respective regional averages. The Rocky Mountain region posted the largest week-to-week increase in the regional average, with 3.3 cents per gallon. The Gulf Coast region led the way in the largest week-to-week decrease in its regional average with a decline of 1.3 cents per gallon.

Following are the average prices by region as reported by the EIA:

  • U.S. – $4.016, down one-tenth of a cent
  • East Coast – $4.155, up seven-tenths of a cent
  • New England – $4.389, up three-tenths of a cent
  • Central Atlantic – $4.353, down four-tenths of a cent
  • Lower Atlantic – $3.962, up 1.5 cents
  • Midwest – $4.019, down six-tenths of a cent
  • Gulf Coast – $3.793, down 1.3 cents
  • Rocky Mountain – $3.983, up 3.3 cents
  • West Coast – $4.038, up three-tenths of a cent
  • West Coast less California – $3.943, one-half of a cent
  • California – $4.119, up 1 cent

ProMiles, the software company that maintains the websites and, continues to offer its own weekly fuel price information. The company’s fuel price data are presented in the same format used by the EIA in the agency’s weekly reports. The prices include a national average as well as regional averages, and comparisons to the previous week and the previous year.

A key difference between the EIA and ProMiles reporting is the type and number of fueling stations the company surveys in order to calculate its averages. While EIA surveys 400 truck stops and convenience stores nationwide, ProMiles uses its direct feed from thousands of truck stops to develop its averages.

According to ProMiles, the average retail price at truck stops was $4.031 on Monday afternoon, an increase of about 6.8 cents compared to last week.

In separate energy news, according to the New York Mercantile Exchange, light sweet crude was trading at $104.69 on Monday afternoon. The price of Brent crude oil was listed at $110.96, according to Bloomberg.

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