California Gas Prices on Upward Trend

Prices Up in Most Metro Areas—State Average $4.05, Says AAA


Media Contact: Cynthia Harris

Emeryville, CA, May 15, 2013

Recent trends of higher prices at the pump have swept across the Golden State, increasing the price per gallon by at least two cents in most metro areas, while other metro areas show a slight decrease, according to the AAA Northern California monthly gas survey.

California’s average price for a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline is $4.05, up by three cents since last month’s AAA report on April 9, 2013. For perspective, gas prices today are $0.30 less expensive than California’s average price on this date last year. Among all 50 states, California has the second highest state average price for regular unleaded gasoline. Hawaii is the highest at $4.34.

“While higher crude prices, tight supplies and refinery maintenance can be cited for price increases throughout some sections of the country, the typical yearly upward trend in prices that Californians are now experiencing is due to the expected increase in demand for gasoline through Memorial Day and summertime travel.” said Cynthia Harris AAA Northern California spokesperson.

Northern California gas prices are now averaging $4.02 per gallon, a change of $0.07 in price from last month’s report. In the San Francisco Bay Area, motorists can expect to pay an average price of $4.12, which is up $0.01 from last month. Today’s national average price for a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline is $3.58, $0.12 less than the average price one year ago.

After drifting higher for several weeks, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil prices were pressured lower today by a stronger dollar and weaker equities. Oil futures are traded in U.S. dollars and as the dollar strengthens against foreign currencies, as was the case today, these futures become relatively more expensive to purchase and are a less attractive investment. At the close of yesterday’s formal trading on the NYMEX, WTI settled down $0.87 at $95.17 per barrel.

The national average is currently 21 cents below the peak 2013 price to date of $3.79 on February 27. In 2011 the national average for regular unleaded gasoline peaked at $3.98 on May 5. In 2012 the price peaked at $3.94 on April 5 and 6.

The least expensive average price in Northern California can be found in Ukiah where regular unleaded gasoline is $3.91 per gallon. Of all the metro areas in Northern California, where gas prices are tracked by AAA, Eureka has the highest average price at $4.13. The highest average price of gas, in the nation’s metro areas that AAA tracks, is in Wailuki, Hawaii. The price there is $4.53 per gallon. The lowest is in Greenville-Spartanburg-Anderson in South Carolina, where the price is $3.21 per gallon.

AAA Monthly Gas Price Averages: May 2013 

City/State/Region

Price

Monthly Change

City/State/Region

Price

Monthly Change

NATIONAL

 3.58

  NC

SAN MATEO

 4.08

 +.02 

CALIFORNIA

 4.02

 +.05 

SAN RAFAEL

 4.12

 +.06 

N. CALIFORNIA

 3.98 

 +.07 

SANTA CRUZ

 4.01

 +.10 

BAY AREA

 4.12 

 +.01 

SANTA ROSA

 4.06 

+.-06

CHICO

 4.98

 +.02

S. LAKE TAHOE

 4.06

+. 03

CONCORD

 4.02

 +.04

STOCKTON

 3.97

 +.08

EUREKA

 4.24

 - .02

TRACY

 3.97

+ .12

FREMONT

 4.01

 +.04

UKIAH

 3.91

 - .09

FRESNO

 4.00

  +.01

VALLEJO

 3.98

 +.02

MARYSVILLE

 3.95

 +.02

YREKA

 4.13

   NC

MODESTO

 3.94

 +.09

Elsewhere…

  

 

MONTEREY

 4.01

 +.01

LAS VEGAS

 3.45

 - .25

OAKLAND

 4.05

 -.01

LOS ANGELES

 4.09

 +.04

PLEASANTON

 4.10

 +.07

NEW YORK CITY

 3.82

 +  .11

REDDING

 3.95

  NC

WASHINGTON, DC

 3.76

 +.15

SACRAMENTO

 4.00

 +.10

 

 

 

SALINAS

 4.04

 +.17

 

 

 

SAN FRANCISCO

 4.13

 - .05

 

 

 

SAN JOSE

 4.05

+ .06

 

 

 

To get the best mileage possible, AAA recommends keeping tires at the proper pressure suggested by the vehicle manufacturer, performing routine maintenance and making sure fluids are clean and belts and hoses are in good repair. The way you drive can also impact fuel economy. Smooth driving to avoid sudden stops and starts, combining trips and lightening your load also helps conserve gasoline.

AAA’s Fuel Gauge Report is the most comprehensive retail gasoline survey available, with over 100,000 self-serve stations surveyed every day, nationwide. Data is provided in cooperation with OPIS Energy Group and Wright Express, LLC.

AAA Northern California offers a wide array of automotive, travel, insurance, DMV, financial services and consumer discounts to over 4.2 million members. AAA has been a leader and advocate for the safety and security of all travelers since it was founded more than 100 years ago.

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