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Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Lockport-area gas is up five cents, according to AAA East Central’s weekly Fuel Gauge report. The average price of self-serve regular unleaded gasoline, based on reports from 22 stations in the Lockport area, was $2.551, same from $2.502 last week and $3.832 this time last year. The national average is $2.457.

The national average price of gas has increased about seven cents per gallon over the past week due to sharply rising crude oil costs. Domestic crude oil prices last week reached the highest levels of 2015 as supplies built more slowly than anticipated. Despite the increase, consumers continue to benefit from substantially lower gas prices compared to recent years, with the least expensive average for this date since 2009 at $2.06.

West Texas Intermediate crude oil prices settled at a 2015 high of $56.71 a barrel last Thursday as the latest EIA report showed that oil supplies increased at the slowest levels since the beginning of the year. The market also weighed potential geopolitical concerns in the Middle East and a weakening dollar.

Global oil prices continue to reflect volatility and industry stakeholders remain divided over where supply and demand fundamentals will send prices. Attention is focused on high-cost production countries like the U.S., where new production has been a key contributor to the sharply lower price of crude. At the close of Friday’s formal trading on the NYMEX WTI settled 97 cents lower at $55.74 per barrel.

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