Gasoline vendors set retail prices based in part on crude oil futures, the vendors' current inventories and the vendors' access to national inventories. Though there is often a delay due to refining and shipping times, patterns in gasoline price fluctuations follow those of crude oil prices.
The price of crude oil, the interplay between supply and demand, and taxes and inflation all influence the price of gasoline, but the historical gas price doesn't predict future trends. The recent drop in oil prices is a response to the boom of shale oil production in the United States.
Commodity prices are notoriously hard to predict; however according to Forbes, gasoline prices are not likely to rise greatly during 2015. However if oil supply is significantly reduced, gas prices may rise.
Gasoline prices mainly depend on crude oil prices and the weather. Crude oil prices reflect the supply and demand of crude oil. When the crude oil supply is high and can meet the demand, its price tends to be low, resulting in lower gasoline prices.
Factors that determine the price of gasoline include the current price of crude oil, the costs of oil refinement, current tax rates and the expenses incurred by petroleum companies to market gasoline to consumers. Of these factors, the price of crude oil is the largest determining factor in gasoline
A chart on GasBuddy.com displays average gas prices per year beginning in 2004 and up to the current year. The chart reveals that since 2004, gas prices have fluctuated between $1.75 per gallon in 2004 to $4.10 per gallon in 2008.
Gas prices do fluctuate, often rising or falling significantly in a short period of time. Reasons for these fluctuations include supply and demand, infrastructure, and inflation.
As propane is a commodity that is highly influenced by changes in temperature, its price varies seasonally, going up in winter months and down in summer months, as demand changes. Other factors that affect the price of propane include domestic and foreign supply and alternative heating sources.
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Current gas prices by state are available online; crowd sourcing site GasBuddy and AAA both offer current information. GasBuddy allows users to search for local gas prices and even has an app that lets users access gas prices anywhere in the country. AAA offers historical information about gas price