Gasoline prices are beginning to increase with the approach of spring and the summer driving season. Crude oil prices, the seasonal rise in gasoline demand, and the elimination of MTBE as a gasoline additive and the concurrent switch to ethanol are placing upward pressure on gasoline prices. The Energy Information Administration's Short-Term Energy Outlook expects the national average retail price to rise above $2.50 this summer. For the week of March 6, Midwest prices rose an average of 12 cents per gallon from last week. Nebraska's average gasoline price increased ten cents per gallon to $2.41 from last week, which was 37 cents higher than the price at this time last year. Weekly average prices in surveyed cities ranged from $2.34 in Columbus to $2.47 in Kearney. As of March 3, the Midwest gasoline stock level was at the upper boundary of the normal range with 54.1 million barrels.
Nebraska's average diesel price increased six cents to $2.57 per gallon. According to the weekly price report, this week's state average was 39 cents higher than the price at this time last year. Weekly averages in the surveyed cities ranged from $2.54 in Columbus and Grand Island to $2.61 in Kearney. On the supply side, the Midwest distillate fuel inventory level was at the upper boundary of the normal range with 25.3 million barrels of diesel fuel as of March 3.
Regular unleaded gasoline is regular unleaded motor gasoline with an 87 to 88 octane. Diesel fuel is fuel used for internal combustion in diesel engines.
An archive of this report and historical weekly prices are available.