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Gas prices flatten locally, nationwide; expected to drop soon

Gas prices are flattening out in Charlotte and the rest of the U.S. and are slated to start dropping this summer, according to auto group AAA.
Gas prices are flattening out in Charlotte and the rest of the U.S. and are slated to start dropping this summer, according to auto group AAA. MAUREEN A. COYLE - mcoyle@charlo

Gas prices are stabilizing in Charlotte as well as the rest of the U.S. as the busy summer driving season gets underway. Prices hover near their highest of the year, though auto group AAA anticipates they will soon start falling.

As of early Tuesday, the average price of a gallon of unleaded gas in the Charlotte metro area is $2.601, less than a penny higher than a week ago and up slightly from $2.445 a month ago, according to AAA.

Statewide, gas is $2.634 a gallon, up from $2.619 a week ago and $2.497 a month ago. The national average price is $2.745 a gallon, up a fraction of a cent from a week ago and up from $2.66 a month ago.

At $2.456 a gallon, South Carolina continues to boast the cheapest gas in the county.

Gas prices are expected to decline as refineries complete seasonal maintenance and gear up production for the busy summer driving season, AAA said in a report released Monday.

By this point, many gas stations across the country have moved over to summer-blend gas, which is environmentally friendly but costs a bit more to produce.

What’s more, the global oil market, which can move domestic gas prices, is likely to be oversupplied in the near term, AAA said, which could translate to cheaper gas.

A number of unforeseen circumstances like weather and geopolitical unrest could cause global oil prices to move up, but for now summertime gas prices are slated to be their lowest in six years.

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Twitter: @katieperalta

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