It's time again for my weekly gasoline update based on data from the Energy Information Administration (EIA). Rounded to the penny, Regular dropped two cents and Premium three. Regular is at its lowest price since April 2009.
According to GasBuddy.com, Hawaii has the highest average price at $3.23. The highest continental average price is in California at $2.45. Missouri has the cheapest Regular at $1.78.How far are we from the interim high prices of 2011 and the all-time highs of 2008? Here's a visual answer.
The next chart is a weekly chart overlay of West Texas Light Crude, Brent Crude and unleaded gasoline end-of-day spot prices (GASO). WTIC closed today at 45.15, little changed from a week ago.
Texas Crude had been trading in a volatile sideways pattern for the past fourteen sessions. The question on everyone's mind, of course is ... Will the next major move be up or down?
The volatility in crude oil and gasoline prices has been clearly reflected in recent years in both the Consumer Price Index (CPI) and Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE). For additional perspective on how energy prices are factored into the CPI, see What Inflation Means to You: Inside the Consumer Price Index.
The chart below offers a comparison of the broader aggregate category of energy inflation since 2000, based on categories within Consumer Price Index (commentary here).
Here are some additional commentaries related to gasoline prices: