Business & Real Estate

Sacramento-area gas prices slow down after recent rapid rise

Darren Johnson, an operations manager at Propel Fuels, finishes polishing the pumps at a Valero gas station on Broadway in Sacramento that sells Propel’s new biodiesel fuel.
Darren Johnson, an operations manager at Propel Fuels, finishes polishing the pumps at a Valero gas station on Broadway in Sacramento that sells Propel’s new biodiesel fuel. rbyer@sacbee.com

Sacramento-area gas prices, which spiked nearly 60 cents over three weeks in late April and the first few days in May, settled down over the past week.

The average retail price of gas in the area on Monday was $3.54 a gallon, up about a penny from the previous week, according to national gas price tracker GasBuddy.com, which does a daily survey of more than 700 gas outlets in the Sacramento area.

The current price is 59.4 cents higher than it was last month but 56.1 cents lower than it was on the same day in 2014.

The national average was $2.66, up 4 cents from last week. That is still about $1 below the year-ago average price.

Allison Mac, a Los Angeles-based petroleum analyst for GasBuddy, said local motorists paid the price for brief shutdowns last month at the Chevron refinery in Richmond and the Tesoro refinery in Martinez.

The California market reacted quickly to the threat of a decreased gas supply, but both refineries have since resumed operations, and wholesale gas costs cooled down after a brief spike following the refinery shutdowns.

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