Thursday, December 1 2022

By Scott Powers for

National and Florida gasoline prices fell a few cents last week from previous highs, with Florida averaging $4.81 a gallon of gasoline on Monday, down 8 cents.

The price reduction comes as international markets have seen lower gasoline futures prices, and market indications suggest the decline could continue significantly, according to AAA – The Auto Club Group. These markets plunged after the Federal Reserve announced a rate hike and President Joe Biden signaled the possibility of oil export restrictions.

Nationally, the average price of a gallon of gasoline fell below $5 to $4.98 on Monday, AAA reported.

Gas prices ranged from $4.65 to $4.89 in Clay County on Monday.

“Florida drivers are finally taking a break after several weeks of rising gas prices,” said AAA spokesman Mark Jenkins.

“Gasoline prices follow oil and gasoline futures, which suffered significant losses last week. The losses are tied to last week’s rate hike by the Federal Reserve, raising fears a possible recession – which could lower demand for fuel.Prices also faced resistance following reports that the Biden administration was considering possible limits on oil exports, in (an) attempt to strengthen domestic supply.

“Oil exports have accelerated in recent weeks as countries compete for fuel in what has become an extremely tight fuel market,” Jenkins added. “Increased competition for fuel has contributed to higher prices.”

On Friday, a barrel of crude was worth an average of $109.56, about $11.11 less than the previous week.

In addition, the gasoline futures market posted a drop of 38 cents over the week. Combined with the previous week, the futures market fell 46 cents in two weeks.

“If this downward trend continues, the decline in gasoline prices could accelerate, bringing the state average down to around $4.50 a gallon,” Jenkins continued. “But this fuel market remains extremely volatile, and things can change very quickly. The state average seems less likely to exceed $5 a gallon, but the driving season is young.

In Florida, the best gasoline prices were found in Pensacola, Orange Park and Middleburg, where it averaged $4.65 a gallon Monday morning. This was followed by Panama City at $4.67, Crestview-Fort Walton Beach at $4.69; Tallahassee at $4.75; Melbourne-Titusville at $4.76; Orlando at $4.78; and Jacksonville at $4.80.

The most expensive Florida gas was found in the West Palm Beach-Boca Raton market at $4.96. This was followed by Gainesville and Fort Lauderdale at $4.88; Fort Myers at $4.87; Miami at $4.86; Sarasota at $4.84; and Tampa and St. Petersburg at $4.81.

Scott Powers is an Orlando-based political reporter with over 30 years of experience, primarily at newspapers such as the Orlando Sentinel and Columbus Dispatch. He covers local, state, and federal politics and space news throughout much of Central Florida. His career has earned him numerous journalism awards for stories ranging from the space shuttle Columbia disaster to presidential elections to misplaced nuclear waste. He and his wife Connie have three adult children. Besides them, he loves mystery and suspense books and movies, rock, blues, basketball, baseball, writing unpublished novels and having fun. Email him at [email protected]


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