VIRGINA BEACH, VA. (January 3, 2017) – Virginia drivers start the New Year with increased gas prices, in fact, at levels not seen since 2014. The current average price for gas in Virginia is $2.20 which is an increase of four cents from last week, 17 cents higher than last month and a 40 cent increase from last year. The average price for gas has gone up 35 days straight in Virginia, largely due to market reaction to the latest OPEC deal signed in late 2016.
Moving into 2017, retail prices will continue to hinge on the ability of cartel countries to successfully implement production cuts, but retail averages are likely to increase leading up to the summer driving season as seasonal refinery maintenance gets underway this spring.
Both crude oil benchmarks closed out the year posting the largest annual gains since 2009, with Brent gaining 52 percent and West Texas Intermediate gaining 45 percent to close the year. These gains can largely be attributed to the OPEC agreement, a deal brokered by OPEC and non-OPEC countries to cut crude oil production by 1.8 million barrels per day in an effort to rebalance the global oil supply. Additionally, as 2016 came to a close, U.S. gasoline production reached a record high of 10.537 million bbl for the last week in December. Typically, domestic demand falls in January so higher gasoline production may lead to a stock build in the coming weeks and could have a bearish market impact on gasoline. In 2017, traders will continue to monitor whether participating countries adhere to the OPEC agreement and the rate at which U.S. gasoline production increases.
As part of North America’s largest motoring and leisure travel organization, AAA Tidewater Virginia provides its more than 330,000 members with travel, insurance, financial and automotive-related services. Since its founding AAA Tidewater Virginia has been a leader and advocate for the safety and security of all travelers. For more information, visit AAA.com and follow us on Twitter at Twitter.com/AAATidewaterVA or on Facebook at facebook.com/AAATidewaterVirginia