Business & Real Estate

Recent declines easing gas price pain at the pumps

Gas prices have slowly edged downward in the past 10 days, but fuel cost increases seen at the pumps statewide in April were evident in the latest AAA gas price survey released Tuesday.

In its monthly survey, AAA said the average price of a gallon of regular unleaded statewide is $4.18, up 13 cents from the April 8 survey. In Northern California, the average of $4.15 is 17 cents higher than last month’s average.

Sacramento came in at $4.09 a gallon, up 19 cents from last month. That wasn’t as bad as the San Francisco area, where the current average is $4.28 a gallon, a 19-cent month-to-month spike.

AAA did note that the average statewide price had dropped 6 cents over the past week.

“Even though today’s prices are higher than a month ago, all metro areas are experiencing a steady decline since last week, which is typical for this time of year, following refinery maintenance before the May 1 deadline to begin producing summer-blend fuel,” said Cynthia Harris, AAA Northern California spokeswoman. “Barring any unforeseen refinery maintenance issues that could push California gas prices up temporarily, state prices should continue to fall as we approach the Memorial Day holiday.”

Nationally, the current average of regular unleaded gas is $3.59 per gallon, up 10 cents from the April survey. AAA said the national average price has fallen for 14 straight days, the longest streak since prices dropped 36 days in a row in September-early October last year.