Gasoline prices down 10% from April peak

The national average has fallen from nearly $4 to $3.54 a gallon recently, and it's likely to keep dropping as global economies slow.

By Charley Blaine Jun 11, 2012 2:02PM
On April 5 and 6, the national average price of regular unleaded gasoline stood at $3.936 a gallon, according to AAA's Daily Fuel Gauge Report. That was up 20% for the year and nearly 31% higher than where it had been a year before.

The next day, the price dropped to $3.932 a gallon A day later, it was down to $3.929. And it went down and down and down. Sunday, the daily survey put the price at $3.542 a gallon. That was down 39.4 cents -- 10% from that April high.

Today, the price is at $3.54, down 10.06%.

Granted, the price is still up 8.1% for the year, and prices vary wildly: They ranged today from $4.47 a gallon in Hawaii, $4.398 in Alaska and $4.167 in Washington state to $3.211 in Tennessee, $3.207 in Alabama and $3.125 a gallon in South Carolina.

But prices are lower and likely to continue to fall. Prices typically peak around Memorial Day and drop in the late summer and fall. They also follow crude oil prices. Crude oil in New York peaked at $109.77 on Feb. 24 and settled Monday at $82.70 a barrel. That's down 24.6% from the April high. Brent crude, which helps price gasoline along the East Coast, peaked at $126.20 a barrel on March 1. It's down more than 22% since then.

So, why did gasoline surge so much early this year? Oil traders were betting on a war between Israel and Iran. The assumption was that Iran would try to block oil tankers from passing through the Strait of Hormuz.

The war didn't happen and may not. That meant the traders who had been speculating on $5-a-gallon gasoline and crude oil pushing, say, $200 a barrel, had to sell quickly to lock in their profits -- or minimize losses if they bought in late.

Economies in Europe and China have cooled off, and that's affected oil markets worldwide. The next question is why prices haven't come down as quickly as oil.

Two reasons: It takes time to work off high-priced inventories. And oil companies and service stations don't want to cut prices if they don't have to. So, prices come down more slowly.

Gasoline prices by state across the country
State

Regular

Mid

Premium

Diesel
Hawaii 

$4.477

$4.563

$4.657

$4.848
Alaska 

$4.398

$4.466

$4.577

$4.514
Washington 

$4.161

$4.290

$4.389

$4.175
California 

$4.117

$4.216

$4.313

$4.129
Oregon 

$4.116

$4.238

$4.346

$4.093
Nevada 

$3.825

$3.937

$4.039

$3.845
Idaho 

$3.786

$3.889

$3.995

$3.992
Connecticut 

$3.777

$3.952

$4.081

$4.110
Illinois 

$3.775

$3.906

$4.067

$3.865
New York 

$3.771

$3.931

$4.053

$4.166
Montana 

$3.758

$3.828

$3.936

$4.004
Michigan 

$3.730

$3.824

$3.932

$3.890
Utah 

$3.727

$3.843

$3.941

$3.873
Vermont 

$3.702

$3.831

$3.948

$4.011
Colorado 

$3.699

$3.799

$3.898

$3.784
Rhode Island 

$3.640

$3.819

$3.960

$3.956
Arizona 

$3.638

$3.750

$3.870

$3.712
Wisconsin 

$3.621

$3.734

$3.883

$3.795
District of Columbia 

$3.607

$3.820

$3.922

$3.932
West Virginia 

$3.600

$3.702

$3.815

$3.925
Indiana 

$3.599

$3.705

$3.812

$3.830
Wyoming 

$3.584

$3.670

$3.784

$3.889
Ohio 

$3.582

$3.685

$3.790

$3.855
New Mexico 

$3.560

$3.676

$3.782

$3.790
Maine 

$3.558

$3.721

$3.838

$3.929
Massachusetts 

$3.552

$3.718

$3.838

$3.901
North Dakota 

$3.546

$3.552

$3.729

$3.832
New Hampshire 

$3.527

$3.676

$3.790

$3.843
South Dakota 

$3.526

$3.457

$3.728

$3.767
Minnesota 

$3.482

$3.545

$3.704

$3.780
Pennsylvania 

$3.478

$3.603

$3.762

$3.887
Nebraska 

$3.468

$3.377

$3.642

$3.671
Maryland 

$3.443

$3.614

$3.749

$3.774
Kentucky 

$3.432

$3.552

$3.665

$3.785
New Jersey 

$3.423

$3.619

$3.741

$3.739
Delaware 

$3.413

$3.598

$3.739

$3.749
North Carolina 

$3.379

$3.526

$3.672

$3.845
Florida 

$3.365

$3.556

$3.683

$3.784
Iowa 

$3.365

$3.283

$3.518

$3.665
Kansas 

$3.355

$3.442

$3.576

$3.653
Texas 

$3.349

$3.504

$3.641

$3.728
Virginia 

$3.318

$3.508

$3.645

$3.705
Missouri 

$3.302

$3.435

$3.589

$3.512
Georgia 

$3.301

$3.478

$3.632

$3.748
Oklahoma 

$3.298

$3.385

$3.509

$3.583
Louisiana 

$3.284

$3.444

$3.573

$3.680
Arkansas 

$3.236

$3.356

$3.512

$3.715
Mississippi 

$3.215

$3.349

$3.496

$3.656
Tennessee 

$3.211

$3.354

$3.493

$3.690
Alabama 

$3.207

$3.370

$3.514

$3.715
South Carolina 

$3.125

$3.268

$3.418

$3.633
















Today

April 6 peak

Chg.

Pct. Chg.
U.S. avg. retail unleaded
$3.540

3.936

39.6 cents

10.06%
Source: AAA Daily Fuel Gauge report

VIDEO ON MSN MONEY

111Comments
Jun 11, 2012 3:09PM
avatar
damn oil companies, they just keep gouging the American people. price of oil per barrel down 22% and i see it down only pennies at the pump. what a damn rip off.
Jun 11, 2012 4:22PM
avatar

What a joke. The gas prices stay so high becuase people are saying they are excited that gas is $3.50 per gallon. If we let them push us to think this is acceptable they will leave it!

Gas above $2.50 or even $2 /gallon is not acceptable. Guess what not long ago I filled up my tank for 99 cents a gallon. That was in 2002. DON'T go for this garbage...keep pushing for congress, our president or someone to do something. Gas companies profiting this much off something that we have no real choice to buy is a JOKE!

Jun 11, 2012 3:05PM
avatar

hell   90% of oil and gas is produced in Tx. and refined here  and gas is about 370  here

 

Is that suppose to make us all HAPPY?  What are you on?

Jun 11, 2012 4:41PM
avatar

It's interesting that the price per barrel drops from $109 to $84 and pump prices only drop a few cents, months later. They always say there's a 3 month lag in pricing, except when it goes up. It happens in a matter of hours then.

  Who's kidding who? We all know this is happening because it's an election year. Once that's over the price will go even higher than it has been so the oil companies  can recover the cost of the election. 

Jun 11, 2012 4:20PM
avatar

Prices are dropping because investors are jittery.  Want to keep oil at a steady low price?...take it out of the commodities.  Crude should be open market where everyone sells it for what they can get.  And those who have the lowest price sells the most.

Jun 11, 2012 4:37PM
avatar
Where are they getting these prices from? Here in OH, it jumped from $3.55 to $3.79 today for regular. There all a bunch of Greedy Lyers!!!
Jun 11, 2012 5:49PM
avatar
But oil prices have dropped over 20% in the last two months.  How does that make sense?  Gas down 10% and oil down 20%.  Get ready for oil companies to record record profits again.
Jun 11, 2012 3:49PM
avatar
whats sad is $82 oil = 2.50 gas not  3.50 gas
Jun 11, 2012 4:31PM
avatar
always an excuse when really it is greed
Jun 11, 2012 4:10PM
avatar
'Oil companies and gas stations don't want to cut prices if they don't have to'.  So, prices come down more slowly'.

Well, DUHHHHHHHHHH.  OK, but they raise prices more quickly when they don't have to as well.

Can't understand why the public is outraged...can you?
Jun 11, 2012 3:58PM
avatar
Oil has gone down 20%. We're still getting hosed.
Jun 11, 2012 3:40PM
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that's all BS!  IT'S AN ELECTION YEAR!!! AND WE'RE GETTING CLOSER! ....  they really think we're idiots don't they...
Jun 11, 2012 4:42PM
avatar
I get SO tired of hearing how prices have dropped and I when I go down the street I see prices rising by 20 cents at a time...  What a game!  Raise the price by dimes and slowly drop by pennies.  When you get down 20 cents lets do it all again!  We are all getting suckered again and again and until we unite as one and not stand for it anymore, then we will keep getting bullied!!!
Jun 11, 2012 3:54PM
avatar
Have no fear folks....as soon as the first gust of wind in the Atlantic blows our Wall Street Speculators will "think" it's a possible Tropical Storm & gas prices will shoot up instantly.  It takes months for the price to fall but any excuse to raise the price happens immediately.  It is the old rockets & feather theory when it comes to oil price gouging.
Jun 11, 2012 6:29PM
avatar
When it drops another 50% then you will have your story to write. Right now the government is trying to train it's sheep to accept that the new normal for gas is going to be in the $3.00-$4.00 range...So sheep just keep quite and keep reelecting the same old crooked politicians, and buy all means better stock up on vaseline before you can't afford it either as it is petroleum based...
Jun 11, 2012 6:01PM
avatar
Down 10% and we all should be jumping up and down screaming with joy? You Idiot. To be quite frank, it should DROP two bucks PER GALLON. Election year and since Nobama has done put the screws to the population in this Country the maggot HAS to try something to make his criminal a$$ look good for a shot at another term. But the morons who think this meager benefit is his Godsend will vote for him again.
Jun 11, 2012 4:41PM
avatar
Glad to see its not just here, gas has been going up around here, and I keep hearing on the news how oil, and fuel cost are going down, but I yet to see that, just the opposite of what their saying.
Jun 11, 2012 4:35PM
avatar
Gas is a mix of a minimum of 5 waste byproducts from refining oil! In the "old days" there were lakes of this waste liquid and the oil companies had to add fences and guards to prevent people walking thru the oil fluids, tossing a cigar or match into the lakes and causing a huge fire. Nope folks gas is a waste product and good olde USA burns it--balance of world uses diesel or alcohol or hydrogen! Then some President allowed oil on the stock market as a commodity--it is a necessity as America never invested in public transit compared to Europe/Japan/ others. So we MUST have gas. As a commodity they speculate and that causes the high prices. Folks gas is a waste product--it is worthless to oil companies BUT we get to dispose of it for oil cos at an exabordiant cost to us all. Gas is worth--tops--.60 cents a gallon! It is industrial waste. That was a "back room deal" with oil cos. and Washington. Try to buy a diesel car--in Europe any car can be diesel. 
Jun 11, 2012 4:40PM
avatar
I live in Northeast Oregon and while prices have dropped everywhere else...they finally dropped 4 cents to $4.19 gallon. It's price fixing pure & simple. First we were told it was supply & demand and because a refinery in Washington was offline the price was up. Now that the refinery is back online we are told that we should see a change in a couple of weeks. Why???? If the prices can go up at the drop of a hat, they should be able to go down. It's a joke!!! If the gov't won't do anything about the price of fuel, maybe they need to make provisions for everyone to have electric vehicles so we are not at the mercy of the oil companies...that way they can keep their oil!
Jun 11, 2012 4:31PM
avatar
don't plan your vacation around oregon, as you won't have enough monies to get back home !! gas here has dropped, but not to where anyone is going to notice....2 weeks ago i paid 4.39 at pump for reg., and last week i paid 4.31, and so far this week i paid 4.29;.......it's getting kinda tough when you own an acre of ground, and to mow, is almost 20 bucks.....maybe i should put a goat in my sites ??

just my thoughts.....steven

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