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Thanksgiving Gas Prices At 3-Year High


GasBuddy’s newest report pegs gas prices at their highest average since 2014, the year oil prices crashed from their highs of over $100 per barrel.

Gasoline prices are up a full 20 percent compared to last year, just in time for the busiest driving weekend of the year in the United States – Thanksgiving weekend.

On Thursday, as families dig into their turkey, gas prices should reach an average of $2.53 per gallon. In 2012, the Thanksgiving-weekend national average cost of a gallon of gas was $3.44.

“This year has been unique at the pumps. Gas prices spent much of the time in the weeks approaching Thanksgiving by rising when typically they would be on a sizeable downward trend,” Patrick DeHaan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy, said in a statement. “On average Americans are paying nearly 40 cents a gallon more than last year, which means collectively we’re spending $800 million more on fuel over the Thanksgiving travel period. Drivers should pay close attention to prices to avoid overpaying.” 

Despite higher gas prices, Americans are still expected to travel in larger numbers for longer periods of time this year compared to 2016, according to GasBuddy’s Annual Holiday Travel Survey.

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The year-over-year gas price hike is largely in line with a spike in the WTI crude benchmark, which was trading at $48.24 a year ago today, compared to $56.34 today—a 17 percent rise. Brent crude was $48.90 a year ago vs $62.14—a heftier 27 percent spike.

Oil prices have been on this rise this year as the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) reduces output by 1.2 million barrels per day in order to close the supply glut in international markets. OPEC’s compliance to the cuts has remained above 90 percent through the life of the pact, encouraging market fundamentals to recover over the course of 11 months.

By Zainab Calcuttawala for Oilprice.com

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