Tulsa's average regular unleaded price falls below $3 per gallon Monday
BY ROD WALTON World Staff Writer
Monday, November 19, 2012
The average price of regular unleaded in Tulsa dropped below $3 for the first time since late 2011, automobile service AAA reported Monday.
AAA Oklahoma spokesman Chuck Mai put the average at $2.98, the cheapest since $2.95 charged on Dec. 28, 2011. Oklahoma also held the third lowest average gasoline price among states, behind Missouri and South Carolina.
“We’re really expect to see the price continue to decline over the next month and half,” Mai said. “We do have some room to fall.”
Some stations were selling self-serve regular as low as $2.85 earlier in the day, but others, including several QuikTrips, showed their price at $2.99, according to observed prices. QuikTrip sells gasoline blended with up to 10 percent ethanol, which is cheaper than unblended fuels.
The sub-$3 joyride may be short-lived in the short term due to worries about the Israeli conflict in the Gaza strip. Benchmark U.S. crude settled up $2.36 to close at $89.28 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
Mideast fears previously were replaced by worries about demand destruction as the U.S. fiscal cliff loomed. Tulsa gasoline prices have fallen more than 70 cents per gallon in less than three months.
“Well, the Mideast is certainly a wild card, but it is very, very difficult for gasoline prices to show any relative strength versus crude from Thanksgiving through, say, Valentine’s Day,” Tom Kloza, chief oil analyst for the Oil Price Information Service, said in an emailed response to questions from the Tulsa World.
The small scope of the price, given the uncertainties over a potential Israeli-Palestinian conflict,: suggests that traders, investors and oil companies are more concerned about demand destruction as opposed to supply disruptions,” Kloza added.