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National gas price average dips below $4 a gallon for first time since March

27 states, including North Dakota and Minnesota, have state average gas prices below the national gas average.

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Aug. 11 marks the 59th consecutive day of declining gas prices.
Mike McGurran / WDAY News
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FARGO — The national average price of gas is below $4 a gallon for the first time since March of this year. Gas prices have been slowly declining for the last two months.

North Dakota and Minnesota are among 27 states with averages below the national average, and in North Dakota, the cheapest prices can be found in Grand Forks. However, prices are still quite a bit higher than what most people would like.

Still, lower prices on gas is good news for people's wallets in a year where just about everything seems more expensive than it used to be. The question is, can people look forward to the trend continuing? Not so fast, says Gene LaDoucer of AAA.

"We've seen oil prices now increase for five straight days, which could signal an end to the declining prices," LaDoucer said.

Oil prices are just one of many factors that could come into play. Demand of gasoline is also up, possibly because prices have been lowering. When demand for gas goes up, prices usually follow.

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However, it's far from a sure thing.

"The last couple of years have been anything but normal as far as gasoline prices are concerned," LaDoucer points out.

Historically, gas prices usually start declining right after Labor Day, and continue to do so for most of the winter. LaDoucer says while it's likely that that will remain the case this year, it could be a different story in the short term.

"They could bounce right back up based on the demand and whether we can continue to meet the demand of the traveling motorists," LaDoucer said.

While prices in North Dakota are high compared to previous years, things could be worse.

California has the most expensive gas in the entire country. Its state average is over $5 dollars a gallon as of Aug. 11.

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