DEARBORN, MICHIGAN(LATMITV)- — Gas prices in Michigan are slipping lower again, after rising an average of 15 cents last week. Sunday's state average of $2.17/g is now nearly 10 cents more than a week ago, after declining a total of 5 cents since Thursday. Although the average Michigan driver is still paying 8 cents more than a month ago, the state average remains 47 cents less than this time last year.
Some of the state's lowest gas prices are in Metro Detroit. Sunday's average of $2.12 per gallon is 6 cents more than a week ago, and 1-cent more than last month, but drivers are paying nearly 47 cents per gallon compared to this time last year.
The national average price for gasoline rose 3 cents last week, but prices are now moving lower. Sunday's average price of $2.26 per gallon is 1-cent less than Friday, 2 cents less than this time last week, and 32 cents less than this time last year.
"Gas prices are slipping lower, due to an oversupply of gasoline," said Nancy Cain, spokesperson, AAA - The Auto Club Group. "Gasoline supplies are at record highs, according to the latest report from the EIA. That's because refineries had been running hard to meet seasonal demand for both heating oil and exports. In doing so, they were left with more gasoline than there was demand for. State averages could drop another 3-5 cents in the next 7-10 days as a result."
Americans are saving nearly $5 when filling a 15-gallon tank of gas, compared to what they paid a year ago. The national average is 71 cents less than last year's high, and only fractions of a penny more than what drivers paid on January 1.
Oil prices held relatively steady last week. Friday's settlement of $53.69/b for WTI was 11 cents less than the week before. Meanwhile, gasoline futures dropped 6 cents on the NYMEX and wholesale prices followed suit.
Crude prices could face upward pressure this week, as a result of political turmoil in Venezuela. The once oil-rich nation sits on the largest oil reserves in the world, but production has declined during its prolonged economic struggles. Venezuela now faces potential sanctions on crude exports. These sanctions are being considered as a method to force Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro from power. This could also result in tightening global crude supplies and higher prices.
Gas Price Tools.
Most expensive gas price averages: Grand Rapids-Muskegon-Holland ($2.21), Benton Harbor ($2.21), and Jackson ($2.19)
Least expensive gas price averages: Traverse City ($2.09), Metro Detroit ($2.12), Ann Arbor ($2.14)