Palm Beach County’s average gas price dropped to $2 a gallon Monday, according to GasBuddy.com.
Of course, the national average has been below $2 per gallon for 25 days and could head lower still as reduced seasonal demand and falling crude oil costs combine to send pump prices to the lowest mark in six years, AAA said.
Monday’s average price of $1.82 per gallon is the cheapest price since January 2009, and retail averages have fallen for 69 of the past 80 days for a total savings of 40 cents per gallon over this span. Crude oil supply continues to outpace demand, which has helped push gas prices down by seven cents on the week, 18 cents on the month and 21 cents on the year.
By searching on GasBuddy.com, bargain hunters can find gas priced as low as $1.75 at a Texaco station as 2274 Okeechobee Blvd. in suburban West Palm Beach.
Other stations such as BJ’s, 1540 W. Boynton Beach Blvd., Boynton Beach were selling gas for $1.76 a gallon Monday.
Many other Palm Beach County stations had gasoline priced at $1.77 to $1.79.
A week ago, the county’s average for a gallon of regular was $2.07. Florida’s average dipped top $1.85 from $1.91, and the national average is $1.82, down from $1.89 a week ago, according to AAA’s Fuel Gauge Report.
“Today is the first time in eight years that every single metro market is averaging less than $2 a gallon,” said GasBuddy senior petroleum analyst Gregg Laskoski.
GasBuddy considers Palm Beach County part of the Miami Metro market, which today has an average price of $1.97 a gallon.
Even though crude oil prices bumped up to $31 a barrel form $26 a barrel Friday, oil prices are still so low that they are exerting downward pressure on gasoline prices, Laskoski said.
“The gasoline inventory is the highest we have seen in about 15 years. Crude oil is at its highest inventory in 80 years, ” Laskoski said.
“We have a glut of inventory and production. It’s like a poker game where North American producers or OPEC producers want to be the first one to blink,” Laskoski said. “So everybody is maintaining production as much as possible.”
However, some production in shale areas has been suspended, resulting in job losses in states such as Oklahoma and Texas.
The Miami metro area typically has the highest gasoline prices in the state. When oil comes into Port Everglades from the Gulf of Mexico, it has to travel around the state. When it comes into Tampa, it doesn’t, Laskoski said.
Will Speer, a GasBuddy senior petroleum analyst, said, “As the Northeast digs out from the brutal blizzard Jonas, commodities markets are attempting to dig themselves out of their recent hole.
“Crude oil futures have lost 18 percent of value since the end of 2015 and have cleared the way for the retail gasoline price decline. Ample supply has been attributed as the cause of prices falling at the pump. Gasoline inventories sitting at 245 million barrels are the highest the U.S. has seen since March 1990,” Speer said.