TAMPA — Gas prices heading into the Fourth of July are on are on track to be the lowest for the season since 2005.
Pump prices around Tampa Bay fell 5.5 cents last week last week to hit $2.02 per gallon Sunday, undercutting the state average of $2.14 and national average of $2.22 per gallon, according to gas price watcher GasBuddy.com. Prices are down across-the-board from the previous week.
Despite OPEC predictions for higher prices, the unusual recent dip continues a downward trend. The oil group attempted to drive prices up by cutting down the global petroleum supply, but higher oil production in Nigeria and Libya have thwarted that.
Analysts for the industry have lowered their predictions for barrel prices in recent months. Goldman Sachs in June dropped its seasonal forecast for $55 per barrel to $47.50 per barrel.
Tampa Bay prices plummeted 33 cents over the past month, a 13-cent drop from this time last year. Nationally, prices have dipped 15.4 cents per gallon since early June, 4.8 cents lower than last year.
But GasBuddy.com says we're due for a rise in prices.
"It is just a matter of time before the national average bottoms out for the short-term," Dan McTeague, senior petroleum analyst for GasBuddy.com said in a release. "At least the low prices was perfectly timed with what may be the lowest average gas prices of the summer as we celebrate the Fourth."
Contact Malena Carollo at [email protected] or (727) 892-2249. Follow @malenacarollo on Twitter.