While Connecticut has ceded the dubious distinction of having the most expensive average gasoline prices in the continental United States to Illinois, pump prices have increased eight cents in the past week to an average of $3.90 per gallon for unleaded regular in the Nutmeg State, according to AAA’s Daily Fuel Gauge Report.
Nationally, the average price for regular gasoline has increased 13 cents in the past week, to $3.63 per gallon. But that doesn’t tell the whole story.
The increasing national average highlights the broad trend of higher pump prices due to rising global crude oil prices, much more expensive domestic ethanol as a result of the current Midwestern drought, and an increase in demand due to the summer driving season. However, looking at prices for individual states during this period reveals that regional price trends have varied dramatically.
As headlines focused on the largest July increase for the national average retail gas price in more than a dozen years, drivers in Alaska, Hawaii, and the Western U.S. have actually seen prices decline over the last month. This price relief has come as refining and distribution issues have been resolved. The onset of these issues had pressured prices in the region higher late this spring—even as the national average retail price was falling. The downward pressure on regional prices from these issues being resolved has been enough to outweigh the upward pressure on prices that has sent the national average higher over the past month.
Arizona now has the least expensive average gasoline price in the country at $3.29 per gallon.
Meanwhile, in Connecticut, we’re still paying less to fill up than we were a year ago, when the statewide average was $4.03.