AAA released a study on Sunday that showed that gas prices dipped slightly in the Sunshine State over the past week.
On Sunday, the average gallon of gas in Florida cost $2.89, down two cents from the start of last week. However, that remains higher than the national average of $2.86 a gallon.
AAA noted that the “downward trend could continue, especially if the Suez Canal is cleared soon” and pointed to other factors impacting the market.
“Crude oil prices – the primary driver of prices at the pump – pinballed up and down last week. U.S. oil prices (WTI) dropped six percent on Tuesday because sellers are worried that rising cases of COVID-19 – in parts of Europe – would lead to lockdowns, thus slowing the recovery in global fuel demand. Additionally, updated figures from the EIA show that refineries along the Gulf of Mexico are bouncing back from the mid-February power outages that crimped gasoline supply,” AAA noted.
“Last week’s oil price decline was enough to potentially send gas prices back below $2.70 per gallon. Unfortunately, those hopes were dashed (for now) when a massive cargo ship ran aground in the Suez Canal, blocking the major artery for fuel shipments. For now, the interruption has not caused crude prices to skyrocket. Domestic crude oil settled the week where it started, at around $61 per barrel,” AAA added.
Mark Jenkins, a spokesman for AAA and the Auto Club Group, weighed in on prices at the pump on Sunday.
“The blockage in the Suez Canal appears to be the only thing keeping upward pressure on prices at the moment,” said Jenkins. “Wholesale gasoline prices are still down 20 cents from two weeks ago. So drivers could see gas prices slip even lower, unless the blockage at the canal raises supply concerns and the price of oil.”
The West Palm Beach-Boca Raton area had the most expensive gas in the state with an average of $3.00 a gallon followed by Miami at $2.92 a gallon and Fort Lauderdale at $2.91 a gallon.
Punta Gorda had the least expensive gas in the state with an average of $2.79 a gallon followed by Jacksonville at $2.83 a gallon and the Crestview-Fort Walton Beach area at $2.84 a gallon.