Business & Real Estate

Sacramento gas prices fall 5 cents; crude oil turmoil may cause another drop

Sacramento-area gas prices have fallen again, and “astonishing” turmoil in crude oil markets might send costs tumbling further, according to a Monday report by GasBuddy.com.

The average retail price of gasoline is now $2.93 a gallon, down from 5 cents a gallon from last week, according to GasBuddy, which does a daily survey of more than 700 Sacramento-area gas outlets. That’s 52.7 cents lower than last year and a decline of 26.3 cents in one month.

The national average is $2.78, down 49.9 cents from a year ago and 21.8 cents lower than last month.

Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst for GasBuddy, said “oil prices have demolished in the last 72 hours as OPEC decided against a production cut, which will open the floodgates to even more gas price declines.”

Crude oil opened Monday at $66.23 a barrel but rallied to close at $69.32, up 4.6 percent on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

DeHaan called OPEC’s action and the subsequent market reaction “perhaps one of the most astonishing weeks in watching crude prices I’ve ever witnessed... Motorists will likely be giddy at what I see in our gas price crystal ball: a 15- to 25-cent drop over the next several weeks.”

Call The Bee’s Mark Glover, (916) 321-1184.

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