After rising dramatically in late February and early March, gasoline prices in New Jersey have fallen about 25 cents per gallon over the past two weeks.
But don’t expect this trend to continue.
According to Tom Kloza, global head of energy analysis for the Oil Price Information Service, the decline in the price of gas appears to be over, although no one is quite sure because the price of oil has been all over the place.
“Every day is an absolute adventure, right now if you asked me what we’re going to see by the end of this week I’d say pretty much the same as you’re seeing now, or maybe a little more high,” he said.
Lots of variables
Kloza said: “I’m afraid you’ve seen most of what you’re going to see for March (lower prices), but April may be different.”
He pointed out that it’s hard to know what’s going to happen next because we see “very, very volatile markets.
“I would say volatility doesn’t really do it, it’s violent markets, calling it volatile is like calling the wet Pacific Ocean.”
How much more?
He said that in the short term, “New Jersey will be in that $4 to $4.30 range, or so, with maybe $3.99 on occasion, which gets a lot of traffic. “
He said increased talk within the European Union about imposing sanctions on Russian oil due to the invasion of Ukraine is disrupting energy markets, driving up prices.
“You may see the prices drift a bit, you know a nickel here or thereabouts, but it won’t be enough to buy a boat, and it won’t be like you saw last year.”
Will Gasoline Go to $5 a Gallon?
When Kloza was asked if he thinks gas prices will hit $5 a gallon this spring, he said, “I think you’ll see that only if you use premium gas, about 5% of the population needs it and about 11% of the population uses it.”
He noted that while the increase in gasoline prices has been significant, the price of diesel has exploded.
“If you use diesel, if you have a truck or a boat that uses diesel, or if you have to be prepared to pay not just $5 a gallon, but maybe $6 a gallon,” he said .
“If we hear that there is real peace in Ukraine, which seems a long way off, then maybe we will get back to normal, but right now the markets are tight.”
A few weeks ago, analysts thought that the United Arab Emirates would put more oil on the market “but somehow the negotiations between them and Western countries have really failed”.
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