S.C. gas prices dip for second week in a row

South Carolina gasoline prices fell for a second week in a row last week.

For the second week in a row, gasoline prices across South Carolina slipped again.

The price fell 2.8 cents a gallon during the past week to an average of $1.81, according to gas price service GasBuddy. Motor club AAA’s Daily Fuel Gauge Report puts the price about a penny higher.

That’s still about 27 cents lower than this time last year.

The price nationally also decreased slightly by 1.2 cents per gallon to an average of $2.04, according to both gas price services. That’s down about 35 cents a gallon compared to the same time last year.

“It’s especially rare in April to see the average price of gasoline dead even or slightly lower in some places than where it was in the prior week, and as encouraging as that news certainly is for U.S. motorists, unfortunately, it’s more of an anomaly than a trend,” said Gregg Laskoski, senior petroleum analyst for GasBuddy. “But it’s still a very good harbinger of the savings 2016 is expected to bring.”

He attributed the decline to a smooth transition by refineries to cleaner-burning summer-blend gasoline. That transition is expected to wrap up across the nation by month’s end.

“Healthy inventory in advance of demand has helped flatten prices, but we don’t expect that to last when summer travel kicks into high gear,” Laskoski said.

Missouri offers the lowest prices in the nation, averaging about $1.80 a gallon, according to AAA.

In South Carolina, the lowest prices can be found in Myrtle Beach at an average of $1.78 a gallon. The price in Charleston-North Charleston is averaging $1.84 a gallon.

In the Charleston area, prices on Monday ranged from $1.73 in West Ashley to $1.99 on the Isle of Palms.

Reach Warren L. Wise at 843 937-5524 or twitter.com/warrenlancewise.