Susquehanna Valley gas prices fell about six cents to $3.54 a gallon this week, according to AAA East Central.

On the national front

Amid continuing geopolitical tensions in eastern Europe, the Middle East and northern Africa, American motorists are paying the lowest average retail price at the pump since March 17. This is due to U.S. refineries running near their highest rates since 2005, according to the Energy Information Administration, and domestic demand that was reported last week to have dropped back below nine million barrels per day.

The national average price for unleaded gasoline has dropped every day in July and has fallen on 32 consecutive days, which is just short of the multi-year record of 36 straight daily declines registered last fall. Tuesday's average of $3.52 per gallon was five cents less than one week ago and 11 cents less than the same date last year.

Over the last week, consumers in 46 states and Washington, D.C., have seen the price at the pump continue to fall, led by drivers in several Midwestern states who are saving more than a dime per gallon, including Ohio (-12 cents). Drivers in nearly every state across the country continue to experience month-over-month and year-over-year savings at the pump. The price has dropped in 47 states and Washington D.C. over the past 30 days, including Kentucky (-35 cents) and Ohio (-28 cents).

The global oil market continues to closely monitor the situation abroad, including tensions between Ukraine and Russia, Hamas and Israel, and production issues in Libya due to civil unrest. These events have yet to impact global supply, but have been cited by analysts as factors keeping a "floor" under crude oil prices and may limit how far U.S. pump prices can fall.

In formal trading on the NYMEX Tueday morning, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil was at $100.79 per barrel.

(AAA East Central - a not-for-profit association with 82 local offices in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, New York and Kentucky servicing 2.7 million members - provides Fuel Gauge each week.)