TOPEKA, Kan. – July 30, 2018 – The average price for a gallon of gasoline in Kansas jumped 4 cents in the past week, tied for the fifth largest increase in America. Today’s Kansas average is $2.68, which is 51 cents higher than one year ago.

“As we’ve expected and predicted, ‘volatility’ is the name of the game with this summer’s gas prices,” said Jennifer Haugh, AAA Kansas spokeswoman. “Steady demand and a relatively low gasoline inventory level in our region are the reasons we’ve seen this most recent increase in retail prices, after seeing some declines in recent weeks. We are still pretty fortunate here in the Sunflower State to have the nation’s 12th cheapest average gas prices, 18 cents less than the national average.”

Of the 10 Kansas cities regularly highlighted by AAA Kansas (see chart below), only Manhattan (-1 cent) experienced a gas price decline this week, while Pittsburg remained flat. Garden City and Salina saw 7-cent increases, and Kansas City, Kan. and Wichita prices rose 6 cents.

According to AAA Kansas, this week’s Kansas gas price extremes are:
HIGH: Howard (Elk County) – $2.90
LOW: Montezuma (Gray County) – $2.43

National Perspective
As U.S. gasoline demand strengthened and supply declined, the national gas price average jumped two-cents on the week to land at $2.86. According to the latest Energy Information Administration (EIA) report, total crude inventories fell on the week and now register at 405 million bbl, which is 80 million bbl lower than levels at the same time last year.

“As crude and gasoline inventories tighten, motorists can expect gas prices to trend higher and remain volatile,” said AAA Kansas’ Haugh. “On the week, pump prices increased as much as 11-cents for some states with others seeing decreases of up to four-cents.”

While today’s gas price average is one-cent less than last month, it is 55-cents more than a year ago and crude oil prices are up $20/bbl compared to this time last year.

Today’s national gas price extremes:
High: Hawaii – $3.78
Low: Alabama – $2.55

Gas Price Trends in Select Kansas Cities
Sources: http://aaa.opisnet.com/index.aspx and http://gasprices.aaa.com/

Today
Last Week
Last Month
Last
Year
Change Over Last Year
National
$2.86
$2.84
$2.85
$2.31
24%
Kansas
$2.68
$2.64
$2.65
$2.17
24%
Emporia
$2.64
$2.61
$2.58
$2.09
26%
Garden City
$2.66
$2.59
$2.56
$2.14
24%
Hays
$2.71
$2.67
$2.71
$2.19
24%
KCK
$2.76
$2.70
$2.68
$2.23
24%
Lawrence
$2.77
$2.75
$2.71
$2.26
23%
Manhattan
$2.67
$2.68
$2.68
$2.14
25%
Pittsburg
$2.68
$2.68
$2.70
$2.04
31%
Salina
$2.65
$2.58
$2.66
$2.19
21%
Topeka
$2.62
$2.61
$2.61
$2.16
21%
Wichita
$2.63
$2.57
$2.66
$2.16
22%
Bordering states and rank in lowest gas prices around the country
State
Current Avg.
Rank Today
Oklahoma
$2.62
8
Missouri
$2.63
9
Kansas
$2.68
12
Colorado
$2.80
22
Nebraska
$2.73
15
Oil market dynamics
At the close of Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX, WTI decreased 92 cents to settle at $68.69. Oil prices trended higher with the release of EIA’s weekly report that total crude inventories fell by 6.2 million bbl and face a year-over-year deficit of 80 million bbl. The tightened domestic crude supply amid robust global gasoline demand and high global crude demand will likely sustain into the near future the more expensive crude oil prices, which are $20/bbl more compared to last year.

Additionally, the market will look at EIA’s supply data and July crude production data from OPEC and its partners — both of which will be released later this week — to determine how supply and demand are faring since the cartel announced that it would increase production to ease global crude price growth. Moreover, according to Baker Hughes, Inc., the U.S. added three oil rigs last week, bringing the total to 861. Currently, there are 95 more active rigs this year than last year at this time.

AAA Mobile App
Motorists 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.

Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2021 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.