Business

Hilo Fuel Averages Steadily Decline, Kona Follows

December 7, 2015, 5:33 PM HST
* Updated December 7, 5:37 PM
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Gas prices in both Hilo and Kona have seen steady levels of slow declines over the past month. These prices have continued on that trend this week, with small drops in fuel averages compared to last week in Hilo and sizable average drops in Kona.

Using numbers from AAA’s Fuel Gauge Report, along with Gas Buddy Data, Big Island Now continues to track Big Island fuel prices.

In Hilo, regular fuel was an average of $2.63 Monday, a drop of four cents compared to last week. Mid-grade fuel dropped in average by three cents to $2.73, and the premium fuel average was $2.89, also a drop of three cents, compared to last week.

One month ago, regular fuel in Hilo was more expensive by a dime at $2.73. Mid-grade and premium fuels were 10 and 11 cents more just one month ago, sitting at $2.83 and $3.95, respectively.

Average fuel prices compared to the same week in December 2014 are lower in average by over one dollar. At this point last year, regular fuel in Hilo cost $1.07 more at an average of $3.70. Mid-grade fuel cost an average of $1.05 more at $3.78. Premium gas cost $1.04 more on average last year at $3.90.

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Fuel in Kona saw a sizable decrease this week. In comparison with data from two weeks ago, fuel dropped by as much as 16 cents.

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Big Island Now’s calculation of Gas Buddy data from Kailua-Kona shows that regular fuel was an average of $2.89 Monday, seven cents less than what was reported last week and a total of 12 cents down from numbers two weeks ago. Mid-grade gasoline was an average of $2.99, a seven-cent decrease in cost compared to last week, and a six-cent overall decrease from two weeks ago. Premium fuel also saw a nice drop in average at $3.08, eight cents less than last week and a drop of 16 cents over the past two weeks.

In Honolulu, the average price of regular fuel was even with the fuel price average in Hilo. The comparable fuel averages are a first in recent months. Kona’s regular fuel average was 26 cents more than Hilo and Honolulu’s number. Oahu fuel buyers are paying three cents less on average for regular fuel than they were one week ago.

Diesel buyers in Hilo were paying an average of $4.09 on Monday. The average dropped by six cents in the past week. Honolulu diesel buyers were paying $4.33, a penny less than last week.

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The national average for regular fuel on Monday was $2.03, a one-cent decrease compared to last week and four-cent drop in two weeks. The national average is 60 cents less than Hilo’s average this week and 83 cents less than Kailua-Kona’s prices.

“The next 24 hours will likely see the national average drop to a new six-plus year low,” said Patrick DeHaan, GasBuddy senior petroleum analyst.  “The U.S. average needs to fall just seven-tenths of a penny from its current $2.032 per gallon (to $2.025/gal.) to be the lowest since March 25, 2009.

“As for the outcome of OPEC’s meeting late last week: OPEC is going to wait for production to resume from Iran before looking at oil production quotas again next year. While we wait and see what that next meeting might bring, high oil production will likely continue to boost already record high oil inventories, keeping gasoline prices somewhat subdued. The national average has once again resumed falling after Turkey’s downing of a Russian fighter jet caused a brief hiatus, but with prices moving lower, a $1.99 national average gasoline price could be something we witness this week.”

Club member-only prices, such as Costco and HFN, are excluded from this analysis and its averages.

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