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Tag Archive | "gas prices"

Gas Prices drop as motorists gear up for Thanksgiving travel 


 

National average gas price on Thanksgiving projected to be third lowest in 11 years 

n-gas-prices-thankshistMotorists preparing to travel for Thanksgiving have something to be thankful for: falling gas prices. According to GasBuddy, prices in 44 of the 50 U.S. states are lower than a week ago, coming just in time for when millions of Americans will be hitting the road.

GasBuddy projects the national average gas price this Thanksgiving will be the third lowest in over a decade at $2.11 per gallon. Average prices have only been lower for Thanksgiving in 2015 ($2.05) and 2008 ($1.81). Monday’s national average price for a gallon of gasoline was $2.14, some 65 cents less than the average price on Thanksgiving merely two years ago ($2.79).

In Cedar Springs, gas was $2.11 Tuesday.

“Over the Thanksgiving travel period, Wednesday, Nov. 23, to Sunday, Nov. 27, motorists will be collectively spending nearly $1.7 billion less at the gas pump than the five-year average,” said Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst at GasBuddy. “This year will go down as the first in over a decade that no state—not even traditionally pricey Hawaii or California—has seen its average daily price breach $3 per gallon. We can thank global oil production that continues to outpace rising demand for the low prices.”

Consumers are taking advantage. According to GasBuddy’s 2016 Thanksgiving Travel survey, 52 percent of those traveling this year will be on the road for at least 4 hours; 20 percent of which will be driving 10-plus hours.

The survey also found that “running out of gas” is the third biggest fear when it comes to being on the road for the holidays this year, ranked behind 1) sitting in traffic and 2) needing to use the restroom but unsure where/when the next one will be available.

Additionally, travelers are on a mission. Fifty-five percent said they only make stops when absolutely necessary. When they do make stops, gas prices and location are the top deciding factors, followed by the cleanliness of the gas station convenience store.

“Travelers will be journeying a long distance this year. It is evident that consumers are looking to save time and make quick stops that can fulfill all their needs from affordable fuel, to clean restrooms, to good food,” said Michael DiLorenzo, vice president of marketing at GasBuddy. “The newly redesigned GasBuddy app is made to help with this journey. With enhanced search filters and station ratings, travelers will now be able to quickly and easily find what they want right in the palm of their hands

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Gas prices rise again


Post photo by L. Allen.

Post photo by L. Allen.

For a short time this week, Michigan had some of the lowest gas prices in the country.

Gas prices in the Grand Rapids and surrounding areas averaged $1.76/gallon as of Sunday, November 29, with prices in the Kalamazoo area as low as $1.68/gallon. The price in Grand Rapids at this time last year was $2.86/gallon.

The price was still $1.76 in Cedar Springs on Wednesday morning, but had risen to $1.89 by Wednesday afternoon.

“Gasoline prices over the weekend and holiday were certainly quite cheap compared to prior years and other holidays this year,” said Patrick DeHaan, GasBuddy senior petroleum analyst. “While some cities and states may see some slight bumps at the pump in the days ahead thanks to the fallout of the downing of a Russian fighter jet last week, we’re more focused on the upcoming OPEC meeting this coming weekend and the potential implications from any major change in oil production. There are expectations that OPEC will continue to kick the can down the road and not change production levels. If there are surprises either way, it could definitely be felt at the pump and into 2016,” he added.

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Roller coaster gas prices


N-Gas

Gas prices plummeted Monday and Tuesday to as low as $2.04 a gallon, then rebounded sharply to $2.39 per gallon on Wednesday.

Wednesday was the switch- over from summer to winter blend gasoline.

No information was available at press time on why the gas prices jumped.

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Gas prices surge 


Gas prices in Cedar Springs jumped twice last week to just under $3.00/gallon, but had dropped down to $2.86 by Wednesday.

Gas prices in Cedar Springs jumped twice last week to just under $3.00/gallon, but had dropped down to $2.86 by Wednesday.

A report from GasBuddy.com, on Monday, August 17, noted that gas prices in Grand Rapids had risen 52 cents a gallon in the last week. The average price in Grand Rapids on Sunday, August 16, was $2.97 a gallon. Cedar Springs was only a penny lower. This compares with the national average that increased 8.5 cents per gallon in the last week to $2.68/g.

By Wednesday, August 17, Cedar Springs had dropped back to $2.86, while the greater Grand Rapids area averaged $2.895.

Including the change in gas prices in Grand Rapids during the past week, Sunday was 45.0 cents per gallon lower than the same day one year ago and 36.5 cents per gallon higher than a month ago. The national average decreased 9.0 cents per gallon during the last month and stands 77.5 cents per gallon lower than the same day one year ago.

“Obviously, the story about fuel prices last week was all about a massive spike in gasoline prices throughout the Midwest,” said Patrick DeHaan, GasBuddy senior petroleum analyst. “Prices have risen in Great Lakes states at paces rivaling and exceeding prior records, which I would pin on an unexpected emergency shutdown of a unit at BP’s Whiting, Indiana refinery. In addition, there have been other scheduled outages in the Midwest that may be leading to gasoline demand outpacing supply in the region, essentially causing panic on gasoline markets,” DeHaan said. “Hikes have been witnessed across many states, though the epicenter of gargantuan hikes was centered in Michigan, Indiana and Illinois, where prices raced up by over 50 cents a gallon in mere days. Also seeing spikes over 25 cents: Ohio, Wisconsin and Kentucky, while Minnesota, Oklahoma, Missouri, Kansas and Iowa saw prices jump over 10 cents a gallon,” DeHaan noted. “At this point, it does appear that most of the price shocks are behind us, though if there are any curve balls that hit the market, all bets are off. Outside the Great Lakes, most regions are seeing gasoline prices decline. Leading decliners are New Jersey and Oregon, with Washington coming in third,” DeHaan said.

Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette issued a warning to gas stations last Friday against any attempt to take advantage of consumers by price gouging or price fixing.

In addition to this warning, the Attorney General has also issued a letter to BP, the owner of the Whiting, Ind. facility experiencing an outage, as well as other major petroleum companies outlining a need for transparency in the case of an outage or other unexpected event.

“As Labor Day weekend approaches, the effects of an outage at a major Indiana petroleum refinery, combined with additional factors, means Michigan families are seeing an increase in the price at the pump. These circumstances do not constitute a free pass for gas stations to gouge consumers,” said Schuette. “We will not tolerate any unscrupulous behavior that violates Michigan law when it comes to gouging and price fixing.”

Every day, year round, Schuette’s Consumer Protection team monitors the balance of wholesale and retail petroleum prices and profit margins in regions around Michigan. Additionally, the Department receives and reviews consumer complaints and inquiries about individual stations. The Department investigates any time there is evidence that state law has been violated for gouging or price fixing.

Under the Michigan Consumer Protection Act, a retailer may not charge a price that is “grossly in excess of the price at which similar property or services are sold.” Anti-trust laws also prohibit gas stations from entering into agreements to arbitrarily fix prices in unison.

For example, Schuette secured convictions for gasoline price-fixing by five Michigan station owners in 2012. The Department has also entered into “compliance-agreements” with stations requiring them to submit to monitoring after they spiked prices well above the state-wide norm on a particular day or after a weather event.

Schuette remains committed to fighting higher gasoline prices in court when the price increases violate the law. If consumers become aware of direct evidence concerning a conspiracy between companies, or have verifiable evidence of a retailer charging a price “grossly in excess of the price at which similar property or services are sold,” they are encouraged to contact the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division at 1-877-765-8388 or file an online complaint at www.michigan.gov/ag.

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Motorists will enjoy cheapest summer gas prices in a decade 


N-gas-chartGasBuddy is projecting that this summer’s gasoline prices will bring the most affordable summer months since at least 2005.

While it may sound wild, GasBuddy projects that the summer driving season of 2015 (Memorial Day through Labor Day) will see the U.S. average price of gasoline come in around $2.35 per gal, a revision from its 2015 forecast it released last December. A recent Energy Information Administration projection pinned summer gasoline prices at $2.45/gal. Both numbers would represent the lowest summer prices in a decade.

“That means more Americans can afford to pack up and go enjoy a summer getaway because the cost of getting there will likely be the lowest since 2005,” said Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst with GasBuddy. “The latest data from the EIA showed the largest week-to-week buildup of crude oil (10.9 million barrels) since March 2001 and that underscores the downward pressure on fuel prices. So we’re confident in our projection; that the summer of 2015 will see the national average come in at a seasonal level we haven’t approached since 2005.”

“For consumers intent on saving the most no matter what part of the country they may be visiting, we suggest downloading GasBuddy’s free app because the average spread (the gap between the highest 5 percent and lowest 5 percent of gas prices) by state still averages out to 45 cents daily,” said Gregg Laskoski, another senior petroleum analyst with GasBuddy.

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Gas prices continue to fall


Photo by J. Reed.

Photo by J. Reed.

By Judy Reed

 

After a year that saw the average price of gas stay between $3 and $4 per gallon, drivers are finally getting some much needed relief at the pump. Last week the Post reported gas had dropped to $1.94 in Cedar Springs, from $2.13 the week before. As of Tuesday, December 30, gas in Cedar Springs is now $1.79 per gallon. That’s the lowest it’s been since early 2009.

According to GasBuddy.com, the average price of gas, as of Tuesday, in Grand Rapids is $1.86; the state average is $2.00; and the national average is $2.26.

“The dramatic decline at the pump continues to reap significant savings for the motoring public—over $525 million less spent every day versus this past summer, or $375 million less than the same time last year,” said Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst with GasBuddy. “The slump in crude oil has wavered slightly and we’re in the fourth quarter of the game. However, there is still a chance that crude prices resume their slump again, and carry the pump plunge into overtime,” DeHaan said.

According to DeHaan, as of Monday, gas prices had fallen $1.85/gal in Michigan since June 28, the largest drop in the nation. Following close behind: Kentucky, down $1.66/gal, Indiana, down $1.62/gal, Ohio, down $1.61/gal, and Illinois, down $1.60/gal over the same time frame.

 

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Merry Christmas! Gas prices still falling


Drivers are lining up to take advantage of the lower gas prices. They fell to $1.94 this week. Post photo by L. Allen.

Drivers are lining up to take advantage of the lower gas prices. They fell to $1.94 this week. Post photo by L. Allen.

Gas prices fell another 19 cents in Cedar Springs this week. Last Wednesday, prices were at $2.13 a gallon, the lowest they had been since the spring of 2009. As of Tuesday, December 23, they had dropped to $1.94 per gallon. The average in Grand Rapids is $2.03, and the Michigan average is $2.18. The national average is $2.37.

“As Americans take to the road for Christmas travel, they’ve all been given a gift that keeps on giving: falling gas prices,” said Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst with GasBuddy. “Americans are saving over $13 million dollars an hour versus gas prices a year ago- adding up to over $315 million every day. Big declines were witnessed in Montana, Michigan, Indiana, Idaho, and Ohio, where average prices fell over 20 cents on average just in the last seven days but everyone has been a winner.”

“Just in the last 24 hours, the national average has declined nearly 7c/gallon, one of the largest single day decreases ever. However, I’m worried the decline may soon begin slowing- oil prices have held in the mid-$50s, and the concrete may be setting in. If it does, and oil prices fail to drop below $50/bbl, gas prices likely won’t drop more than another 10-20 cents per gallon. Either way, a sneak peak at our soon to be released 2015 gas price forecast reveals a yearly national average far lower than what we saw this year,” DeHaan said.

 

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Gas prices drop below $3


N-Gas-2.98Gas prices dropped to $2.98 per gallon Wednesday evening, the first time prices have been below $3 in three years.

Fill up now, GasBuddy says they will be spiking again soon.

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Gas prices rise here, fall in other states


N-Gas-prices-under3-webBy Judy Reed

 

Cedar Springs and the greater Grand Rapids area saw gas prices rise to $3.49 early this week, while drivers in 18 other states saw gas prices fall to below $3/gallon.

So why is gas rising here while falling in other states? According to Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst of GasBuddy.com, the Great Lakes is a volatile and competitive region. “Gas stations started selling gas under cost. They lose 5 or 10-cents a gallon over the course of a week or two, and then need to restore the price,” he explained. “Then the competition starts again, and prices start to go back down.” He said this strange price cycling has been going on since 2000.

He believes that by Thanksgiving we might see prices under $3. He said we could tell prices are on a downward trend, because each time they go up, it’s not as high. “This time it was $3.49, last time it was $3.59, and the time before that it was $3.65.”

Some parts of Michigan already have gas prices hovering around $3.10-$3.15.

 

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Adapt your vehicle and driving habits to combat rising gas prices


Looking for ways to save money at the pump? A truck bed cover can reduce drag and cut fuel consumption.


(ARA) Just as Americans are gearing up for warm-weather road trips and family vacations, prices at the gas pump are rising. For most people, driving is essential for getting to work, taking kids to school and going out to have some fun, so filling up the tank is a non-negotiable expense. However, costs add up quickly as fuel prices climb higher, taking up more of your budget.

If you want to keep your plans in place and your spending on track, it’s important to be smart about fuel consumption. Not everyone can afford to buy a new, ultra-fuel-efficient car, so making adjustments to your existing vehicle—and your driving habits—can help you stretch the dollars you spend at the pump.

* Drive mindfully: If you’re used to speeding up fast and braking at the last moment, you need to reconsider how you’re operating your vehicle. Those habits can drain your gas tank and send you back to the pump more often. Instead, make a conscious effort to accelerate and slow down gradually and use cruise control to maintain a constant speed, all of which will help to use fuel more efficiently. When possible, avoid idling and make plans for running errands, to cut down on the number of trips you take.

* Reduce drag: If you drive a truck, smoothing out the aerodynamics of your truck with a truck bed cover or a tonneau cover can make a big difference in fuel consumption. Covers are a simple solution that will give you immediate gas mileage improvement. The roll-up cover is lockable, so it protects your gear and improves the look of your vehicle in addition to reducing drag and bringing down your gas costs. Covers can be added easily with clamp-on installation and can be rolled up behind the cab when not in use.

* Choose wisely: You’re typically given three options at the pump, with a trio of gasolines with different octane levels and different prices. One of the simplest ways to cut costs is to opt for the lowest octane fuel that you can use in your vehicle. Making this change can save you hundreds of dollars per year, without sacrificing performance or gas mileage.

* Give your vehicle a check-up: Maintenance and mileage can go hand in hand, so it’s important to make sure that your car is in shape for saving fuel. Check and change your oil regularly. It’s an essential component in reducing wear caused by friction between moving parts in the engine. If it’s not clean, or if levels are low, your vehicle won’t be performing as efficiently as possible. Equally important to getting good mileage is the air pressure in your tires, which should be at the manufacturer’s recommended levels (often listed on the driver’s side door frame). Proper inflation can improve your gas mileage by up to 3 percent. A check of the air, oil and fuel filters should also be included in a check-up.

Making adjustments to your vehicle and the way you drive can be the best way to save yourself from going over budget on gasoline. Start with these tips and you’ll be able to enjoy the season the way you want to.

 

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