The average retail price of gasoline fell about 5 cents a gallon in California and nearly 7 cents nationwide over the last week, the Energy Department said Monday, as prices continued to recede from the highs of the year set June 22.
The average cost of a gallon of regular gasoline statewide dropped to $2.829, down 5.1 cents for the week and 17.6 cents since June 22, according to the Energy Department's weekly survey of filling stations. The U.S. average declined 6.5 cents to $2.463 a gallon, down 22.8 cents from its high for the year.
Crude oil prices rose 42 cents to $63.98 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, short of the important benchmark of $65 a barrel. Much of oil's movement was influenced by a weak dollar, analysts said. Crude also was buttressed by a strong day in global equity markets.
Another factor influencing investors was the weekend agreement on $3 billion in rescue financing for CIT Group Inc., a 101-year-old lender to small- to medium-sized businesses. CIT has been trying to stave off bankruptcy after it was hurt badly when credit markets froze up last year.