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Diesel prices drop while gasoline prices surge this week.

Diesel drops while gasoline goes up

March 5, 2024
The first full week of March saw diesel prices dip with a nationwide average of $4.022 per gallon. Meanwhile, gasoline prices increased at a much higher rate, with the national average rising by 10 cents.

Diesel and gas prices across the U.S. diverged in a big way this week. While the U.S. Energy Information Administration found national diesel pump prices fell over the past week, gasoline jumped 10 cents per gallon. The national diesel average is down 3 cents to $4.022 per gallon and gas is up to $3.350, according to EIA's March 4 report.

The national diesel price is 26 cents cheaper than this week last year, a trend that almost every U.S. region mirrored. The only areas that saw diesel prices rise were California, where it increased less than a cent to $5.228, and the Rocky Mountain Region, which also increased less than a cent to $4.077.

In comparison, every other region saw relatively small price decreases, the largest being 7 cents on the West Coast without California. Including California in average fuel price calculations, the Lower Atlantic subregion saw diesel prices drop by 4 cents to $4.077, with the Midwest area decreasing a similar amount to $3.919 per gallon. The regions with the smallest diesel price decreases include the New England and Central Atlantic subregions, which dropped by less than a cent.

Considering these factors, the Gulf Coast is still the cheapest place to purchase diesel fuel at $3.731 per gallon, while California is still the most expensive at $3.731.

Compared to the AAA motor club, diesel prices are currently averaging at $4.05, more expensive than the EIA by 3 cents, as well as last week’s average of $4.071 by 2 cents. It is still cheaper than last year’s diesel price average of $4.387.

Gasoline prices surge to $3.50 per gallon

While diesel prices decreased marginally, gasoline prices rose across the board at a much higher rate. The current nationwide average for U.S. regular gasoline prices is 10 cents higher than last week at $3.50 and only 3 cents less than this time last year.

Prices also surged across the country, with some areas, such as the Lower Atlantic subregion and the Midwest, higher than both last week’s average and this same period last year. For the Lower Atlantic, prices are $3.190 per gallon, 4 cents higher than last week and 5 cents more than last year. For the Midwest, the EIA logged gas prices at $3.269 per gallon, 17 cents higher than last week and less than a cent higher than last year.

See also: Diesel and gasoline prices slip as spring nears

Otherwise, gas prices across the country rose at rates of less than a cent all the way up to 21 cents in California. The lowest price increases were in the New England and Central Atlantic subregions, which rose less than a cent and 2 cents, respectively.

The Gulf Coast is still the cheapest for gasoline fuel at $2.949, and California is the most expensive at $4.651 per gallon.

The AAA also noted this price increase, with their average measuring up at $3.352 per gallon, 9 cents more than the week before and only 4 cents better than this time last year. The organization hypothesized that this increase could be due to the rise in travelers for spring break.

“We’re entering spring break season, and historically, March and April bring higher gas prices as demand rises,” said Aixa Diaz, AAA spokesperson. “With milder temperatures come more road trips, and this time of year tends to be a precursor to the summer driving season.”

About the Author

Alex Keenan

Alex Keenan is an associate editor for Endeavor's Commercial Vehicle Group, which includes FleetOwner magazine. She has written on a variety of topics for the past several years and recently joined the transportation industry, reviewing content covering technician challenges and breaking industry news. She holds a bachelor's degree in English from Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colorado. 

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