MERIC NEWS LETTER

Summer Driving Forecast

Data from the AAA Daily Fuel Gauge Report for June 6, 2006 indicate retail gasoline prices in Missouri are among the lowest in the nation.

Missouri averaged $2.67 per gallon of regular unleaded gasoline, twenty cents less than the national average and seventy-three cents less than Hawaii, the nation’s highest priced gasoline.

Missouri ranked third in the nation for the lowest price for a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline. Oklahoma and South Carolina had the lowest price at $2.64 per gallon.

12 Month Average for Regular Unleaded

Average Missouri gas prices were just one cent higher a month ago, but sixty-eight cents higher one year ago. The highest recorded price for a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline in Missouri was $3.06, recorded on September 4, 2005. For a gallon of diesel fuel, the highest recorded price was $3.29 on October 23, 2005.

 

Missouri (and U.S.) Gas Prices

 Type                    June 6, 2006                   May 6, 2006                         June 6, 2005

Regular

$2.67 ($2.87)

$2.68 ($2.91)

$1.99 ($2.11)

Premium

$2.94 ($3.16)

$2.95 ($3.20)

$2.19 ($2.32)

Diesel

$2.75 ($2.95)

$2.79 ($2.97)

$2.12 ($2.67)

Metro Areas
For regular unleaded fuel, the Springfield and St. Joseph metro areas were below the state average. Springfield was seven cents lower than the state average and twenty-seven cents lower than the national average. St. Joseph was one cent lower than the state average and twenty-one cents lower than the national average.

Regular Unleaded

June 6, 2006

Month Ago

Year Ago

Columbia

$2.69

$2.71

$1.98

Kansas City (MO only)

$2.67

$2.66

$1.99

Springfield

$2.60

$2.64

$1.95

St. Joseph

$2.66

$2.68

$1.98

St. Louis (MO only)

$2.72

$2.69

$2.04

Columbia had the lowest diesel fuel costs among Missouri metro areas, seven cents below the state average and twenty-seven cents lower than the national average.

Columbia also had the greatest difference in regular unleaded fuel from one year ago, with a seventy-one cent increase.

Springfield had the greatest difference in diesel fuel from one year ago, with a sixty-four cent increase.

Diesel

June 6, 2006

Month Ago

Year Ago

Columbia

$2.68

$2.82

$2.11

Kansas City (MO only)

$2.75

$2.79

$2.12

Springfield

$2.76

$2.78

$2.12

St. Joseph

$2.72

$2.77

$2.09

St. Louis (MO only)

$2.73

$2.77

$2.11

 


       
Price Trends
     
A variety of factors have contributed to the increase. The average price of crude oil has
      increased from around $50 per barrel a year ago to around $70 per barrel today.
      And wholesale prices were at $1.49 per gallon of regular unleaded gasoline, compared to
      $2.15 per gallon today. The ongoing conversion to ethanol has also caused a strain on
      refineries.

Missouri prices, however, are consistently among the lowest in the nation due to a few major factors. First, Missouri has some of the lowest motor fuel taxes in the country. While the national fuel tax average is twenty-two cents per gallon, Missourians pay seventeen cents per gallon. Secondly, there is no sales tax on gasoline in Missouri as in some states. Third, there are many pipelines to transport fuel in Missouri, and numerous ports offering river offloading. Finally, there is a highly competitive atmosphere in Missouri, with most major companies represented.

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