Diesel reaches highest prices in two years

By Tyson Fisher, Land Line staff writer | Monday, August 14, 2017

The average price of a gallon of on-highway diesel went up 1.7 cents to $2.598 per gallon for the week ending Monday, Aug. 14. This marks the seventh consecutive increase after a month of decreases and the highest prices since Aug. 17, 2015, when diesel cost $2.615.

Diesel price averages went up in nine of 10 regions in the U.S., according to the Energy Information Administration. The largest average increase was in the West Coast less California region, where prices at the pump went up by 4.1 cents per gallon. Prices remained unchanged in the Gulf Coast region, the only region not to experience an increase.

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

  • U.S. – $2.598, up 1.7 cents
  • East Coast – $2.624, up 1.1 cents
  • New England – $2.625, up seven-tenths of a cent
  • Central Atlantic – $2.761, up 1 cent
  • Lower Atlantic – $2.527, up 1.3 cents
  • Midwest – $2.57, up 2.7 cents
  • Gulf Coast – $2.41, unchanged
  • Rocky Mountain – $2.70, up 2.7 cents
  • West Coast – $2.877, up 2.9 cents
  • West Coast less California – $2.788, up 4.1 cents
  • California – $2.949, up 1.9 cents

According to ProMiles, the average retail price at truck stops was $2.571 on Monday morning, a 1.9 cent increase 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 $2.649, with truckers in Pennsylvania paying an average of $3.107 per gallon, the highest in the nation. Truckers in South Carolina are paying a national low of $2.393 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. Two states, Pennsylvania and Washington, are reporting average prices, unchanged from last week. No states have reported average diesel prices below $2 since April 27, 2016.

AAA has indexed diesel prices at $2.528 for Monday, 23.5 cents more expensive than this time last year and 8.4 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 September delivery was trading at $47.90 at noon CDT on Monday, a $1.49 decrease from last Monday and a 92-cent decrease from its last settlement price. The price of Brent crude oil for October settlement was listed at $51.04, a $1.33 decrease from last Monday and a $1.06 decrease from its last settlement price.

According to Reuters, oil prices dropped about 2 percent on Monday in response to a strengthening dollar and weak domestic demand in China. Oil prices had increased recently amid news of oil supply reductions in Libya.

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