NJ Gas Prices Drop in March
New Jersey saw a big drop in gas prices during the month of March. AAA Mid-Atlantic reports that gas prices came in like a lion at the beginning of the month, but they’re going out like a lamb.
Prices at the pump started the month at $3.77 per gallon, but over the past four weeks, they’ve dropped 13 cents, to $3.64. That’s 28 cents less than at this same time last year.
“While prices at the pump have declined throughout most of March, it is still too soon to say whether retail prices have peaked for the spring because there is still refinery maintenance to be completed and much of the country has yet to transition to (more expensive) summer-blend gasoline,” according to Tracy Noble, Manager of Public and Government Affairs for AAA Mid-Atlantic.
She pointed out with the national average falling further below the year-ago price, AAA continues to predict that the national average will crest lower than in recent years. Back in 2011 the national average for regular unleaded peaked at $3.98 on May 5. In 2012 the price peaked at $3.94 on April 5th .
The price of crude oil strengthened to a five-week high this past Wednesday (settling at $96.58 per barrel), supported by a larger-than-expected build in crude oil inventories (3.3 million barrels) and signs of increased demand. Economic news, both domestic and international, also supported crude oil’s run above the $96 per barrel mark. The U.S. economy in the fourth quarter was better than expected, and Cyprus banks also reopened, which could help to mitigate fears of unrest spreading through the Eurozone.