Northern Virginia Chevron gas station employee Paul Chumpa lowers the price for one gallon of Regular gasoline 10 cents from US$3.19 to US$3.09 per gallon early in the morning Oct. 16, 2008. Because of lower demand, the average price of a gallon of self-served and unleaded gasoline fell to its lowest level since January 2005 in the Los Angeles area on Thursday.[Xinhua]
Because of lower demand, the average price of a gallon of self-served and unleaded gasoline fell to its lowest level since January 2005 in the Los Angeles area on Thursday.
The average price is US$2.557 less than the record high of 4.626 set on June 21, the Oil Price Information Service reported.
The average price has fallen for 72 consecutive days, dropping US$1.698 over that span, including 3.6 cents from Tuesday to Wednesday.
The lower prices reflect lower demand and a steady decline in crude oil prices caused by the worldwide economic downturn, and reduced speculation by futures traders, Jeffrey Spring of the Automobile Club of Southern California said.
The price of a barrel of light, sweet crude fell 57 cents on Thursday in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange to US$53.87, 63 percent less than the record high of US$147.27 set July 11.
The tremendous decrease in the price of crude oil is the leading reason for the decrease in the price consumers pay for gasoline. Crude oil costs account for two-thirds to three-quarters of the price of a gallon of gasoline, said Tupper Hull, director of strategic communications of the Western States Petroleum Association, a trade association representing major oil companies in six Western states.
Nationally, the average price of a gallon of self-serve unleaded gasoline fell 2.2 cents on Thursday to US$1.846.
California's gasoline price is typically among the highest in the nation because of the state's "boutique blend" of fuel designed to reduced polluting emissions, and taxes, according to Marie Montgomery, an Auto Club spokeswoman.
(Xinhua News Agency November 28, 2008)