Based on EIA’s weekly survey of gasoline prices, the U.S. average retail price for regular gasoline fell to $1.996 per gallon (gal) on January 11, falling below $2.00/gal for the first time since March 23, 2009. The U.S. average retail regular gasoline price had last approached, but not gone below, the $2.00 mark in early 2015. Falling gasoline prices are a result of falling crude oil prices and the seasonal slowdown in gasoline demand.
Four of the five regions in the United States currently have averages below $2.00/gal, with the exception of the West Coast, where the retail regular gasoline price averaged $2.63/gal on January 11. Gasoline prices on the West Coast tend to be higher than elsewhere in the country because of the region’s relative isolation from other gasoline markets and higher state taxes. Additionally, gasoline supply chains on the West Coast are adjusting to several refinery outages that occurred in 2015, which tightened gasoline supplies and increased prices.