Pump Prices within a Nickel of Year-Ago Levels

West Coast wholesale spike threatens Arizona's pump price relief

Phoenix, Ariz., May 10, 2012. Arizona pump prices have fallen for six straight weeks, and are now within a nickel of year-ago prices. Statewide, motorists are paying an average of $3.798 per gallon, a drop of 2.7 cents from last week. This week, the national average shed 6.4 cents to $3.739 per gallon.

This week, the price of crude oil slipped for 6 consecutive days, marking the longest streak of declines for the commodity in two years. This trend, in part, caused the Energy Information Administration to reduce its 2012 nationwide fuel forecast to $3.71 per gallon, which is 16 cents less than the agency’s previous forecast. While several factors point to continued pump price relief, refinery trouble, which has triggered inventory concerns on the West Coast, have recently surfaced, causing a spike in West Coast wholesale pricing. Depending on the duration of the price spike, this could reverse the current downward trend in the region, including Arizona.

 “At this point, it’s too soon to tell when and to what extent the spike in the West Coast wholesale markets will impact Arizona retail prices,” said Linda Gorman, director of communications and public affairs for AAA Arizona. “In the short-term, this may result in tightened retail prices, or even a price reversal, as we move closer to the holiday weekend.”

AAA will release its annual Memorial Day travel forecast on Tuesday, May 15. The forecast will provide a first glimpse of summer travel and how fuel prices may have impacted plans.

Tucson and Flagstaff hold the low and high state fuel averages at $3.669 and $3.918 respectively. Missouri and California hold the low and high price extremes for the lower 48 states at $3.464 and $4.216, respectively. 

City

Today’s Price

Change from Last Week

Premium

Diesel

Last Year’s Price

East Valley
(Mesa, Gilbert, Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Apache Junction, Queen Creek)

$3.780

-3.1

$4.036

$3.923

$3.741

Flagstaff

$3.918

-3.4

$4.101

$4.128

$3.850

Glendale

$3.790

-1.2

$4.057

$3.966

$3.730

Peoria

$3.793

-1.3

$4.047

$3.987

$3.715

Phoenix (city)

$3.784

-2.2

$4.043

$3.973

$3.751

Pima County

$3.684

-1.8

$3.893

$4.047

$3.624

Prescott
(Tri-Cities)

$3.818

-4.8

$4.062

$3.999

$3.706

Scottsdale
(Scottsdale, Fountain Hills)

$3.885

-3.8

$4.158

$4.053

$3.848

Tucson

$3.669

-1.6

$3.886

$4.012

$3.616

Yuma

$3.785

-3.0

$3.983

$3.989

$3.794

Statewide

$3.798

-2.7

$4.031

$4.028

$3.748

National

$3.739

-6.4

$4.030

$4.060

$3.951

E-85

$3.264

-1.6

-

-

$3.338

*E85 MPG/BTU adjusted price

$4.296

-2.1

-

-

$4.393

As an advocacy organization representing the motoring public, AAA offers a variety of free resources to help motorists keep fuel budgets in check, including: 

  • AAA Gas Price Alerts (AAA.com/gasalerts) offers users weekly fuel price text alerts.

*The BTU-adjusted price of E-85 is the nationwide average price of E-85 adjusted to reflect the lower energy content as expressed in British Thermal Units. The BTU-adjusted price is calculated and displayed as part of AAA's Fuel Gauge Report because according to the Energy Information Administration, E-85 delivers approximately 25 percent fewer BTUs by volume than conventional gasoline. Because "flexible fuel" vehicles can operate on conventional fuel and E-85, the BTU-adjusted price of E-85 is essential to understanding the cost implications of each fuel choice for consumers.

AAA’s Fuel Gauge Report includes data from gasoline stations in every Arizona community. Local prices in some communities might be higher or lower than the averages shown here. This service is updated daily by the Oil Price Information Service (OPIS) with average national, state and local prices for gasoline, diesel and E-85. Every day more than 100,000 stations are surveyed in cooperation with Wright Express for unmatched statistical reliability.