Are low gasoline prices coming to an end?

Tuesday, 05 December 2017, 04:38:44 AM. Gasoline prices fell in Houston and across the nation, but enjoy it while you can. With crude prices rising as OPEC restricts production and inventories dwindle, expect higher fuel costs in 2018.

Gasoline prices fell in Houston and across the nation, but enjoy it while you can. With crude prices rising as OPEC restricts production and inventories dwindle, analysts expect higher fuel costs in 2018.

The average price of a gallon of gas in Houston fell about 2 cents over the past week to $2.17 a gallon, according to GasBuddy. com, a website that tracks gas prices and refining activity. The local price is down about 2 cents from a month ago, but 25 cents higher that a year ago.

RELATED: Oil surges on renewed OPEC deal

Nationally, a gallon of gasoline averaged $2.46, down 6 cents over the month, but 28 cents higher than year ago.

Patrick DeHaan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy, said motorists may see some modest decreases over the next few weeks, but they should expect higher gasoline prices next year.

"With OPEC deciding last week to extend last year's agreement on oil production cuts, the future for gasoline prices isn't as rosy," said Patrick DeHaan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy. "As we set our sights on the months ahead, 2018 is starting to look ominous as a result of OPEC's extension."

U.S. crude inventories area 100 million barrels lower than a year ago, which should support higher petroleum prices, DeHaan said. Already, higher crude prices this year are expected to push the annual average gasoline price to the highest since 2014, DeHaan said.

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