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Gas prices drop as fuel demand and oil prices go down

AAA says gasoline costs boil down to supply and demand. If drivers continue to fill up less and oil prices continue to drop, then gas prices will drop as well.

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. — Prices at the pump are going in reverse.

Drivers who filled up their tanks recently may have noticed they’re paying less for gasoline. Gas prices dropped steadily over the last few weeks. 

According to AAA, the average price of gas has now fallen every day since hitting a record $5.01 on June 14.

So why are prices falling?

Holly Dalby with AAA said demand for fuel has dropped and so has the price of oil.

“They’ve come down $.18 since last week. Today’s average being $4.12,” Dalby said “Supply has come back up and then demand has actually dropped a little bit. So more supply, less demand equals lower prices.”

Dalby said in response to high gas prices, drivers filled their tanks less, carpooled with others, and spent less time on the road. All of those things combined, she said, lowered the demand for fuel.

Filling up your gas tank hasn’t been cheap.

“We were spending well over $200 a month on gas,” driver Jerry Wilkins said. “I’m just thankful the gas is dropping especially those people who have to commute a long distance. My daughter-in-law does and she spends a lot more on the gas than we do.”

Driver Bryan Spalla said it’s better than nothing.

“I pay for myself as well as two daughters and so the price is much higher that way,” Spalla said. “It’s relief right now but of course, it shouldn’t have gotten so high to begin with.”

Why did prices those price get so high? According to Dalby, the war in Ukraine drove up the price of oil while a busy travel season increased the demand for fuel.

But will prices keep dropping?

“It’s so hard to say,” Dalby said. “Things are just very volatile right now. There’s so many things that go into impacting these prices in the world market that it’s just impossible to say if we’re gonna keep falling or go back up.”

Dalby explained that gas prices are impacted by a global market, not just what’s happening here in the United States. And drivers notice, that although prices are dropping, it’s still a lot higher than it was one year ago.

“It’s not really a good deal,” Wilkins said. “I mean we all say, ‘Hey look at that, that’s a great bargain!’ Because the prices are low but when you compare to about a year ago.”

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