Auto Club: Gasoline Prices Continue Lower But U-Turn Could Be In The Offing

Weekly Fuel Prices Report

(LOS ANGELES, April 2, 2004) — Gasoline prices inched lower for the fourth straight week in the Southwest, but rising demand and spiking wholesale prices indicate the month-long decline may be at an end, according to the Automobile Club of Southern California's Weekend Gas Watch. The national average for gasoline is $1.751, an increase of nine-tenths of a cent from last week, but down from the record high of 1.753 set on Tuesday.

Currently, the average price of self-serve regular unleaded gasoline in the Los Angeles–Long Beach area is $2.127, which is 2 cents lower than last week. This price is 5 cents lower than last month and 3 cents lower than last year. In San Diego, the price is $2.143, which is 1.4 cents below last week, 5 cents lower than last month and 6 cents lower than last year. Motorists in the central coast pay an average price of $2.219, which is two-tenths of a cents lower than last week, 2 cents below last month and 4 cents higher than last year.

"Last week, California gasoline production declined by 11 percent, inventories dropped by 15.7 percent and demand for gas remains very strong. That is a recipe for higher pump prices," said Auto Club spokesperson Carol Thorp. "Because the state's supply margin is so thin, wholesale prices spiked 25 cents per gallon in the past week. Until California's demand for gas levels off, we could see retail prices over $2/gallon for weeks to come."

The Weekend Gas Watch monitors the average price of gasoline at metropolitan destinations throughout the nation.

Average prices as of 12:01 a.m., April 2:

Local and Nearby Areas Regular Change from last week Record Price
Los Angeles–Long Beach $2.127 -2.0 cents $2.202 (03/04/2004)
San Diego $2.143 -1.4 cents $2.217 (03/06/2004)
Santa Barbara–Santa Maria–Lompoc $2.219 -0.2 cents $2.276 (03/06/2004)
National Average $1.751 +0.9 cents $1.753 (03/30/2004)
Other Areas Regular Change from last week Record Price
New York $1.929 +1.5 cents $1.968 (09/06/2003)
Washington, D.C. $1.782 +3.4 cents $1.797 (05/16/2001)
Boston $1.739 +0.1 cents $1.812 (09/03/2003)
Philadelphia $1.761 +1.0 cents $1.807 (09/03/2003)
Atlanta $1.626 +1.1 cents $1.626 (03/31/2004)
Miami $1.807 +0.7 cents $1.809 (03/31/2004)
Chicago $1.858 +6.3 cents $2.142 (06/19/2000)
Detroit $1.750 +1.5 cents $2.137 (06/20/2000)
Kansas City, MO $1.634 +0.1 cents $1.790 (06/21/2000)
St. Louis $1.679 -0.1 cents $1.767 (05/17/2001)
Denver $1.750 +5.2 cents $1.780 (06/5/2001)
Dallas $1.652 +1.8 cents $1.666 (05/12/2001)
Houston $1.631 +1.1 cents $1.639 (05/12/2001)
Salt Lake City $1.797 -0.2 cents $1.800 (03/23/2004)
Las Vegas, NV $2.088 -0.9 cents $2.105 (03/6/2004)
Phoenix, AZ $1.943 -1.4 cents $2.146 (08/26/2003)
Seattle $1.835 +0.2 cents $1.969 (09/4/2003)
San Francisco $2.211 -1.6 cents $2.276 (03/19/2003)
Honolulu $2.039 +1.6 cents $2.054 (10/2/2003)

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