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Charlotte drivers continue to enjoy lower prices at the gas pump

As of early Tuesday, Charlotte area gas cost $2.253 for a gallon of unleaded on average, down from $2.268 a week ago, according to auto group AAA. Charlotte’s gas is more than $1.30 cheaper than it was one year ago.
As of early Tuesday, Charlotte area gas cost $2.253 for a gallon of unleaded on average, down from $2.268 a week ago, according to auto group AAA. Charlotte’s gas is more than $1.30 cheaper than it was one year ago. jsimmons@charlotteobserver.com

Mirroring a nationwide trend, gas prices in Charlotte and statewide continue to steadily decline and remain well below average prices from years past.

As of early Tuesday, Charlotte area gas cost $2.253 for a gallon of unleaded on average, down from $2.268 a week ago, according to auto group AAA. Charlotte’s gas is more than $1.30 cheaper than it was one year ago.

North Carolina gas cost on average $2.258 a gallon, which is down from $2.274 a week ago. Gas statewide is also more than $1.30 cheaper than it was at this time last year. The national average cost of a gallon of gas is $2.388, the same as it was one week ago. Americans are saving $1.25 on average on a gallon of gas over last year’s price, according to AAA.

South Carolina’s gas is still the cheapest in the country at $2.098 a gallon.

“It is estimated that even with prices reflecting seasonality, consumers are expected (to) see prices move lower leading up to the peak driving season this summer,” AAA said in a report Monday.

Nationwide gas prices this week are significantly lower than they were in years past: At this time in 2013, a gallon of unleaded gas cost over $3.50, in 2012 it was about $3.90, and in 2011 it was just over $3.80.

Gas prices could continue to fluctuate depending on the price of oil, AAA said, as well as the ability of domestic refineries to manage scheduled and unscheduled maintenance.

Oil production and supplies continue to outpace demand, which put additional downward pressure on oil prices. As of early Tuesday, the price of West Texas Intermediate crude, the domestic benchmark, was $52.42 a barrel, while Brent crude, the international benchmark, was $58.31 a barrel.

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