Half of all states, including Oregon, see weekly declines

PORTLAND, Ore., – Lackluster demand for gas and lower crude oil prices have eased recent price hikes at the pumps. While the East Coast is seeing prices rise due to the switch to summer-blend fuel in that region, gas prices in half of all states, including Oregon, are declining. For the week, the national average for regular ticks up two cents to $3.67. The Oregon average slips a penny to $4.43 a gallon.

National State Local Gas Prices 4-23-24

“Conflicts in the Middle East as well as the war between Russia and Ukraine continue to keep oil markets on edge. But this is also the time of year that we wrap up the transition to summer-blend fuel and we also tend to see a lull in gasoline demand between spring break and Memorial Day. This means pump prices will likely waffle a bit over the next couple of weeks with smaller increases and even some price dips,” says Marie Dodds, public affairs director for AAA Oregon/Idaho. “The national average may continue to edge higher as the East Coast finishes making the switch to summer-blend fuel.”

The national and Oregon averages are at their highest prices since October. This week no Oregon counties have averages below $4 a gallon.

The Oregon average began 2024 at $3.79 a gallon compared to $4.43 today. Its lowest price so far this year is $3.58 on February 14. The national average started the year at $3.11 and is at $3.67 today. Its lowest price so far this year is just under $3.07 on January 15.

Gas prices always rise starting in late winter through early spring as refineries undergo maintenance as the switch to summer-blend fuel occurs. The switch occurs first in California, which is why pump prices on the West Coast often rise before other parts of the country. The East Coast is switching now and is the last major market to make the change to summer-blend fuel. Most areas have a May 1 compliance date for refiners and terminals, while most gas stations have a June 1 deadline to switch to selling summer-blend until June 1. Switch-over dates are earlier in California with some areas in the state requiring summer-blend fuel by April 1. Some refineries will begin maintenance and the switchover as early as February.

Crude oil prices have remained elevated due to geopolitical events around the world including increased volatility in the Middle East, drone attacks on Russian refineries, and Houthi militant attacks in the Red Sea. In addition, production cuts by OPEC+ have tightened global crude oil supplies.

Crude oil prices have backed away from six-month highs. West Texas Intermediate climbed above $80 on March 14 and above $85 on April 2, then dipped below $85 starting on April 17. Major drivers of elevated crude prices are the unrest in the Middle East and the Ukrainian attacks on Russian refineries. Russia is a top global oil producer and the refinery attacks have reduced output.

Crude prices have been volatile after the attack on Israel by Hamas in October. While Israel and the Palestinian territory are not oil producers, concerns remain that the conflict could spread in the Middle East, which could potentially impact crude production in other oil-producing nations in the region.

Crude oil is trading around $83 today compared to $85 a week ago and $79 a year ago. In 2023, West Texas Intermediate ranged between $63 and $95 per barrel. Crude reached recent highs of $123.70 on March 8, 2022, shortly after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, and $122.11 per barrel on June 8, 2022. The all-time high for WTI crude oil is $147.27 in July 2008.

Crude oil is the main ingredient in gasoline and diesel, so pump prices are impacted by crude prices on the global markets. On average, about 57% of what we pay for in a gallon of gasoline is for the price of crude oil, 14% is refining, 13% distribution and marketing, and 16% are taxes, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Demand for gas in the U.S. grew slightly from 8.61 million b/d to 8.66 million b/d for the week ending April 12, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). This compares to 8.52 million b/d at the same time last year.

Meanwhile, total domestic gasoline stocks decreased by 1.1 million bbl to 227.4 million bbl.

Higher demand and a rise in oil prices could push pump prices higher.

Quick stats

Oregon is one of 25 states and the District of Columbia with lower prices now than a week ago. New Jersey (+22 cents) has the largest week-over-week gain in the nation. Michigan (-11 cents) has the biggest weekly decline. The average in Alaska is flat.

California ($5.42) has the most expensive gas in the nation for the eighth week in a row and is the only state in the nation with an average at or above $5 per gallon. Hawaii ($4.80) is second, Washington ($4.66) is third, Nevada ($4.62) is fourth, Oregon ($4.43) is fifth, Alaska ($4.37) is sixth, and Arizona ($4.11) is seventh. These are the seven states with averages at or above $4, same as a week ago. This week 43 states and the District of Columbia have averages in the $3-range. No states have averages in the $2 range this week.

The cheapest gas in the nation is in Mississippi ($3.10) and Colorado ($3.15) and. No state has had an average below $2 a gallon since January 7, 2021, when Mississippi and Texas were below that threshold.

The difference between the most expensive and least expensive states is $2.33 this week, compared to $2.40 a week ago.

Oregon is one of 42 states and the District of Columbia with higher prices now than a month ago. The national average is 13 cents more and the Oregon average is 25 cents more than a month ago. Oregon has the 15th-largest monthly gain in the nation. California (+44 cents) has the largest monthly jump. Iowa (-6 cents) has the biggest monthly decline.

Oregon is one of 25 states and the District of Columbia with higher prices now than a year ago. The national average is the same as a year ago and the Oregon average is 34 cents more than a year ago. This is the fourth-largest yearly gain in the nation. California (+53 cents) has the largest year-over-year increase. Arizona (-58 cents) has the largest yearly decrease.

West Coast

The West Coast region continues to have the most expensive pump prices in the nation with all seven states in the top 10. It’s typical for the West Coast to have six or seven states in the top 10 as this region tends to consistently have fairly tight supplies, consuming about as much gasoline as is produced. In addition, this region is located relatively far from parts of the country where oil drilling, production and refining occurs, so transportation costs are higher. And environmental programs in this region add to the cost of production, storage and distribution.

RankRegionPrice on 4/23/2024

As mentioned above, California has the most expensive gas in the country for the eighth week in a row. Hawaii, Washington, Nevada, Oregon, Alaska and Arizona round out the top seven. Oregon is fifth most expensive for the 27th week in a row.

Most states in the West Coast region are seeing week-over-week declines: California (-3 cents), Nevada (-3 cents), Arizona (-2 cents), Washington (-1 cent), and Oregon (-1 cent). Hawaii (+4 cents) is the only state in the region with a weekly increase. The average in Alaska is the same as a week ago.

The refinery utilization rate on the West Coast increased slightly from 86.4% to 86.5% for the week ending April 12. This rate has ranged between about 74% to 97% in the last year. The latest national refinery utilization rate decreased slightly from 88.3% to 88.1%. The refinery utilization rate measures how much crude oil refineries are processing as a percentage of their maximum capacity. A low or declining rate can put upward pressure on pump prices.

According to EIA’s latest weekly report, total gas stocks in the region fell from 29.08 million bbl. to 27.65 million bbl.

An increase in the refinery utilization rate and/or a high rate can put downward pressure on pump prices while a dip in gasoline stocks can put upward pressure on pump prices.

Oil market dynamics

Crude oil prices eased last week as the EIA reported crude oil inventories increased by 2.7 million barrels from the previous week. At 460.0 million barrels, U.S. crude oil inventories are just 1% below the five-year average for this time of year. Crude prices remain below $85 per barrel to start this week as Iran says it won’t further escalate the conflict in the Middle East by responding to Israel’s retaliatory strike launched last Friday.

At the close of Friday’s formal trading session, WTI added 45 cents to settle at $83.14. At the close of Monday’s formal trading session, WTI slipped 29 cents to close at $82.85. Today crude is trading around $83 compared to $85 a week ago. Crude prices are about the same as a year ago.

Drivers can find current gas prices along their route with the free AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android. The app can also be used to map a route, find discounts, book a hotel and access AAA roadside assistance. Learn more at AAA.com/mobile.

National Gas Price Comparison 4-23-24


For the week, the national average slips two cents to $4.03 a gallon. The record high is $5.816 set on June 19, 2022. The Oregon average holds steady at $4.29. The record high is $6.47 set on July 3, 2022. A year ago the national average for diesel was $4.18 and the Oregon average was $4.56.

Find current fuel prices at GasPrices.AAA.com.

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Fuel prices are updated daily at AAA’s Daily Fuel Gauge at AAA Gas Prices. For more info go www.AAA.com.  AAA Oregon/Idaho provides more than 890,000 members with travel, insurance, financial and automotive-related services, and is an affiliate of AAA National, serving more than 64 million motorists in North America.