R.I., Mass. gas prices continue to slide, but that may end soon

/ ASSOCIATED FILE FILE PHOTO/JOHN RAOUX

PROVIDENCE – The average weekly price of self-serve, regular unleaded gasoline in Rhode Island declined 9 cents to $3.14 per gallon this week. That average is 6 cents higher than the national average, AAA Northeast said on Tuesday. 

Northeast gasoline prices continued their slide toward a seasonal bottom last week, but with petroleum markets beginning to send mixed signals, the days of daily pump price declines may end in the near future, AAA said. The region’s inventories grew by a substantial 4 million barrels last week even amid strong demand and declining gasoline production as refiners try to improve margins, which have narrowed since September. At the same time, oil prices ended higher last week, snapping a seven-week stretch of declines on a weaker dollar and some market analysts revising upwards their demand estimates for next year.   

“As New England average gasoline prices creep downward and closer to the national average, motorists could see prices below $3 per gallon at some stations if they shop around,” said Mark Schieldrop, AAA Northeast senior spokesperson. “AAA is forecasting that roughly 104 million Americans will drive to their holiday destinations this year and they will be greeted with the gift of lower gas prices.” 

Midgrade gas in Rhode Island averages $3.82 per gallon, premium gas averages $4.14 per gallon and diesel fuel averages $4.29 per gallon, AAA Northeast said. 

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A year ago, the price of regular gas in Rhode Island was $3.33 per gallon. 

In Massachusetts, the average price of self-serve, regular unleaded gasoline is $3.26 per gallon, down 5 cents from last week. 

Midgrade gas in the Bay State averages $3.86 per gallon, premium gas averages $4.20 per gallon and diesel fuel averages $4.26 per gallon. 

A year ago, the price of regular gas in Massachusetts was $3.44 per gallon. 

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