Gas prices continue to fall in Arkansas and most of the nation despite a slight dip in oil reserves and evacuations from Hurricane Dorian on the East Coast.
The state average for Arkansas on Monday was $2.23 a gallon compared to the national average of $2.56. The state average for Oklahoma on Monday was $2.27, according to AAA.
Gas prices dropped about 2 cents per gallon across the nation in the past week to continue a seven-week trend.
With the change to winter gasoline just two weeks away for a bulk of the country, Patrick DeHaan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy.com, believes there will be additional drops in gas prices ahead.
"While a China/U.S. trade deal could undermine the normal seasonal decline in prices that we anticipate, it’s still nearly guaranteed that average gas prices in nearly every state will stand lower on Thanksgiving and Christmas versus where we stand today,” DeHaan wrote.
AAA noted crude oil prices saw some gains last week following Energy Information Administration’s weekly report that showed crude oil stockpiles decreased by 10 million barrels. Closing out the week, crude oil futures fell 3% ahead of the hurricane’s landfall with fears that its impact could dampen demand.
“As an East Coast storm, Hurricane Dorian is not threatening major oil and gas infrastructure so its impact is localized to its path along the East Coast,” AAA spokesperson Jeanette Casselano stated Monday. “For the rest of the country, demand, which remains high, is chipping away at supply, but not at a high enough rate to increase gas prices.”
For those concerned about pricing impacts from Hurricane Dorian, DeHaan says not all hurricanes impact prices. The last to leave a mark on prices was Hurricane Harvey in 2017, which knocked out a third of all U.S. refining capacity.
According to GasBuddy’s state price history, gas prices in Arkansas are 11.9 cents a gallon lower than a month ago, and 32.6 cents a gallon lower than a year ago.
Hurricane Dorian drove Florida’s gas price average up 4 cents on the week and is starting to impact pump prices in Georgia and South Carolina by pennies. Some gas stations in the Sunshine state were reporting fuel shortages, due to motorists filling-up ahead of the storm. Those shortages will be short-lived as fuel will be resupplied once tanker trucks can travel into any impacted areas.
The rest of the region has not been impacted by the hurricane and on the week, gas prices are as much as a nickel cheaper in Texas. Most states saw prices push cheaper by 2 to 3 cents. At $2.18, Louisiana and Mississippi carry the cheapest gas price averages in the country.