VIRGINIA BEACH, VA (November 26, 2018) – As November draws to an end, gas prices in Virginia continue to drop the lowest average so far this year. Currently, the price for unleaded gas in the Commonwealth is $2.35, which is four cents less than last week, a 24 cent drop from last month, and only a five cent increase from last year. In Hampton Roads, gas prices are even lower at $2.26 per gallon of regular gas, a five cent drop from last week and 27 cents less than last month.
On the week, the national gas price average has dropped seven cents to land at $2.56. As pump prices steadily decline, they are headed toward some of the cheapest gas prices in 2018. The national average was lowest in January at $2.49 while May brought the most expensive price of $2.97.
Gas prices have been cheaper in the U.S. as crude oil sells at $57/bbl and the lowest price of the year. However, market observers warn crude could see an increase following the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) meeting on December 6 in Vienna, Austria. At that meeting, OPEC is expected to curtail crude production by 1 million to 1.4 million barrels per day, which could cause crude prices to rise due to reduced global supply, in turn causing gas prices to turn higher in America.
At the close of Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX, WTI dropped $4.21 and settled at $50.42. Oil prices plunged to their lowest point since October 2017 last week as EIA reported that crude inventories continue to build. The latest EIA weekly petroleum report showed that crude inventories grew by 4.9 million bbl to 447 million bbl. Total domestic crude inventories have grown for nine consecutive weeks, contributing to the crude prices dropping further. If this week’s EIA report shows another build, crude prices will likely continue their descent.
Growth in global crude production, including in the U.S., combined with weaker than expected global crude demand for the fourth quarter of 2018 have contributed to growth in global crude inventories. Market observers will now watch OPEC closely, which may decide to reduce its total crude production at its meeting next month. If OPEC, along with Russia, decides to reduce production, crude prices will likely increase due to the agreement.
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 Facebook at facebook.com/AAATidewaterVirginia.