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U.S. Gasoline Prices Set To Ease

After hitting a peak of $3.45 per gallon last week, the national average U.S. gasoline prices are expected to calm down significantly this week due to price cycling, Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis for fuel-savings app GasBuddy, said on Monday.

The national average saw over the past week one of its largest weekly jumps in the last year or so, De Haan tweeted on Monday, but added that average gasoline prices should calm down significantly this week. According to GasBuddy, prices are actually down by $0.03 per gallon from the $3.45/gal peak due to price cycling, which now leads to some states stations lowering prices.

“Prices surge, then stations start undercutting, leading to a big spike then ebb,” De Haan said, commenting on the price cycling in the retail gasoline market.

Price cycling is common in Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, Illinois, West Virginia, Kentucky, Florida, and some metro markets like St. Louis, Kansas City, and Atlanta, among others, he added.

Last week, gasoline prices surged due to the rally in crude oil prices, which sent WTI Crude above $92 and Brent over $93 a barrel.

The median U.S. gasoline price jumped by 10c/gal from a week ago and stands at $3.29/gal. The bottom 10% average $2.98, the top 10% average $4.39, De Haan noted on Monday.

Per AAA data, the national average was $3.441 a gallon on February 7, and the average price in every state in the United States was above $3 per gallon, including in Texas, Mississippi, Arkansas, and Alabama, which traditionally have the lowest statewide average price of gasoline.

At the start of this week, $2.99 is no longer one of the most common prices in the U.S., De Haan said on Monday. The current most common prices, in order: $3.19, $3.29, $3.39, $3.09, $3.49, according to GasBuddy.

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By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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