Another decline leads to lowest diesel prices in a month

By Tyson Fisher, Land Line staff writer | Monday, January 23, 2017

The average price of a gallon of on-highway diesel went down 1.6 cents to $2.569 per gallon for the week ending Monday, Jan. 23. This marks the second consecutive decrease after six straight weeks of increases and the lowest prices since Dec. 27.

Diesel price averages went down in nine of 10 regions in the U.S., according to the Energy Information Administration. The largest average decrease was in the Midwest region, where prices at the pump went down by 2.9 cents per gallon. Prices increased by one-tenth of a cent in the New England region, the only increase in the nation.

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

  • U.S. – $2.569, down 1.6 cents
  • East Coast – $2.627, down nine-tenths of a cent
  • New England – $2.676, up one-tenth of a cent
  • Central Atlantic – $2.784, down 2 cents
  • Lower Atlantic – $2.507, down four-tenths of a cent
  • Midwest – $2.512, down 2.9 cents
  • Gulf Coast – $2.414, down 1.5 cents
  • Rocky Mountain – $2.532, down six-tenths of a cent
  • West Coast – $2.846, down nine-tenths of a cent
  • West Coast less California – $2.75, down five-tenths of a cent
  • California – $2.923, down 1.4 cents

According to ProMiles, the average retail price at truck stops was $2.521 on Monday morning, a 1.9-cent decrease from last week.

ProMiles, the software company that maintains the websites ProMiles.com and TruckMiles.com, 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.

TruckMiles.com listed the daily average price for Monday at $2.594, with truckers in Rhode Island paying an average of $3.039 per gallon, the highest in the nation. Truckers in Missouri are paying a national low of $2.328 per gallon, according to the site. No states in the Lower 48 states have been listed in excess of $4 per gallon at the pump since Dec. 4, 2014. Only one state, Rhode Island, has average prices above $3, unchanged from last week. No states have reported average diesel prices below $2 since April 27, 2016.

AAA has indexed diesel prices at $2.521 for Monday, 42.3 cents more expensive than this time last year and 6 cents higher than a month ago.

In separate energy news, according to the New York Mercantile Exchange, light sweet crude (also known as West Texas Intermediate) for February delivery was trading at $52.81 at noon CDT on Monday, a 33-cent increase from last Tuesday and a 39-cent increase from its last settlement price. The price of Brent crude oil for March settlement was listed at $55.24, a 23-cent decrease from last Tuesday and a 25-cent decrease from its last settlement price.

According to Reuters, oil prices moved very little on Monday as an increase in U.S. drilling pared any possible price increase to come from OPEC and non-OPEC countries seemingly en route to meeting production cuts agreed upon in a deal that began on Jan. 1.

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