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Monday, May 18, 2015

Lockport-area gas has remained stable, 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, is 2.741, same from $2.734 last week and $3.824 this time last year. The national average is $2.705.

One week from the Memorial Day holiday, the national average price for regular unleaded gasoline has increased on 32 of the past 34 days, reaching today’s price $2.71 per gallon. Despite the national average continuing to register new highs for 2015, drivers are still experiencing significant yearly savings at the pump and today’s price is discounted by 94 cents year-over-year, making it the lowest average for this date since 2009. Pump prices have moved higher nationwide in recent months, largely due to the global rally in crude prices.

The global oil market remains oversupplied, but market watchers are closely monitoring U.S. production and the recent outbreak of violence in the Middle East for any impact that could shift this balance. Volatility will likely continue to characterize the global market in the near term as traders closely watch the balance between supply and demand. In particular, more expensive crude could lead to an increase in production and supply, which could put a ceiling on the current rally in price.  Speculators are also interpreting the latest action by the so-called Islamic State, who seized control of the city of Ramadi, Iraq, as a reminder of regional instability in the near term.

At the close of Friday’s formal trading on the NYMEX, West Texas Intermediate was down 19 cents and settled at $59.69 per barrel.

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