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Drop in Pump Prices Slows as Crude Gets More Costly

June 09, 2003|From Reuters

Average U.S. retail gasoline prices continued to fall over the last three weeks but did so at a slower rate as crude oil prices began to rise, according to a nationwide survey released Sunday.

The national average for self-serve regular gasoline fell 1.81 cents to $1.505 a gallon in the period between May 16 and June 6, according to the Lundberg survey of about 8,000 gas stations. The latest price remained more than 10 cents above last year's June 7 survey.

The national average for self-serve regular gasoline fell 2.29 cents to $1.5236 in the period between May 2 and May 16, according to the previous survey.

"In the past three weeks, gasoline price declines are much slower and appear to be ceasing altogether," said Trilby Lundberg, Camarillo-based editor of the survey.

"This is because in the same three-week period, crude oil prices stopped falling and rose," she added.

"Refiners are paying more for their raw material and have to increase gasoline supplies for the summer driving season," Lundberg said.

The most expensive gasoline was found in the Honolulu area at an average price for self-serve regular of $1.95 a gallon; the cheapest gasoline was in the Charleston, S.C., area at $1.29 a gallon, according to the survey.

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