Diesel average drops below $2 a gallon

The U.S. Energy Information Agency reported this week that for the first time in 11 years the average price for diesel fuel fell below $2 a gallon.

“The U.S. average retail diesel price had last approached, but not gone below, the $2.00 mark in early 2009. Falling diesel prices reflect both decreasing crude oil prices and increasing inventories of crude oil and refined products worldwide,” the EIA’s report, issued Wednesday, states.

EIA lists the average price of on-highway diesel (all types) at $1.98 per gallon. By comparison, the average price for regular gas is $1.72 per gallon.

The EIA goes on to explain why diesel has usually been priced higher than regular gasoline, which dropped below $2 a gallon, on average, over a month ago.

“In recent years, diesel prices have tended to be higher than gasoline prices, reflecting strong global demand for diesel, federal fuel taxes for diesel that are six cents/gal higher than those for gasoline, and the higher production cost of ultra-low sulfur diesel.”

For 2016, EIA reports that diesel prices should average around $2.22 a gallon, while in 2017 the agency expects the price per gallon to increase to $2.58.

The diesel average is compiled from prices received each Monday morning from 403 trucks stops and fuel stations across the U.S. Prices include all taxes and reflect self-serve, cash-only pumps.