After stubbornly staying above $80 a barrel since Labor Day, the price of crude oil tumbled this week into the mid-$70s. At the close of Friday’s formal trading session, West Texas Intermediate decreased by $2.91 to settle at $76.10. Crude prices declined last week despite reports from the Energy Information Administration (EIA) showing that total domestic crude supply decreased by 2.1 million barrels to 433 million barrels. When compared to the end of November 2020, current total domestic crude supply is nearly 12 percent lower than last year.
Lower crude prices are reflected in today’s national average price for a gallon of gas, down a penny since last week to $3.40. As AAA projects more than 48 million Americans will hit the road this Thanksgiving week, motorists will be paying $1.29 more for a gallon of gas than a year ago and 81 cents more than in 2019.
According to new data from EIA, total domestic gasoline stocks decreased by 700,000 barrels to 212 million barrels last week. Gasoline demand also dropped slightly from 9.26 million barrels per day to 9.24 million barrels per day. The decrease in demand, alongside stocks, has helped to steady pump prices. However, gasoline prices will likely remain elevated as long as oil prices are near or above $75 per barrel.