Auto Club: In Shades Of 2008, Double-Digit Price Increases Return

(LOS ANGELES, June 4, 2009) For the first time since last June, Southern California gas prices posted double-digit weekly increases amounting to two cents a day, bringing about the highest one-week price increase of 2009, according to the Automobile Club of Southern California’s Weekend Gas Watch.

The average price of self-serve regular gasoline in the Los Angeles-Long Beach area is $2.825 per gallon, which is 16.2 cents more than last week, 49 cents higher than last month, and $1.44 less than last year. In San Diego, the price is $2.839, which is 15.2 cents more than last week’s price, 49 cents above last month, and $1.48 lower than last year. On the Central Coast, the average price is $2.877, up 15.5 cents from last week, 44 cents above last month, and $1.48 below last year. In the Inland Empire, the average per gallon price is $2.810, which is 14.9 cents more than last week, 48 cents more than last month, and $1.47 less than last year.

“There is no supply-and-demand explanation for these hefty increases, according to many oil industry analysts,” said Auto Club spokesperson Jeffrey Spring. “Just as in 2008, commodities investors are pushing up crude oil and wholesale gasoline prices at a frenzied pace that seems to have no connection to domestic fuel consumption or availability. There have been some refinery issues this year across the U.S., but no more so than in other years.
“Even though current prices are far lower than last year, Southland gas prices have zoomed up by 55 percent since January – the biggest percentage increase this decade,” Spring added.

The Weekend Gas Watch monitors the average price of gasoline. As of 11 a.m. on June 4, averages are:
 
Area

Regular

One-week
change


Record Price

Los Angeles –
Long Beach

$2.825

+16.2 cents

$4.626 (6/21/08)


Orange County

$2.822

+16.9 cents

$4.598 (6/19/08)


San Diego

$2.839

+15.2 cents

$4.630 (6/19/08)


Santa Barbara –
Santa Maria –
Lompoc

$2.877

+15.5 cents

$4.709 (6/21/08)


Riverside –
San Bernardino

$2.810

+14.9 cents

$4.614 (6/22/08)


Bakersfield

$2.838

+16.4 cents

$4.591 (6/24/08)


Ventura

$2.838

+16.4 cents

$4.625 (6/18/08)