Gas prices fall for first time in 2018, but not in Utah
(KUTV) - The stock market rollercoaster has had its impact on gas and oil prices that are now dropping for the first time in 2018.
The national average price for gasoline fell for one week, but it's unknown if the decline will translate to lower gas prices in Utah.
According to AAA, Utah's average price for a gallon of unleaded gasoline was $2.51 on Tuesday, holding steady after 45 straight days of rising gas prices.
"Utah started the year with an average price of $2.39 per gallon and peaked at $2.51 this week," AAA stated in a news release. "The national average price of gasoline dropped 3 cents this week, signaling that prices in Utah could fall as well in coming days."
As travel decreases after the Christmas holiday, gas prices typically reflect that downward trend in January and February but rising oil prices the last few months have yielded high prices at the pump.
For most of 2017, crude oil prices fluctuated near $50 a barrel but jumped to $70 a barrel by early January following a cut in oil production in Saudi Arabia and other OPEC countries, AAA reported.
"Utah consumers should be prepared for prices to increase this year another potential 10 to 15 cents, but many market factors will drive that. Without a crystal ball, it's too soon to determine," stated Michael Blasky, spokesman for AAA Utah, in a press release.
Higher prices at the pumps are also credited to a strong economy, which means more people driving and consuming energy.
Gasoline demand registered at 9.1 million barrels per day, a 169,000 barrel-per-day increase year-over year, AAA reported.