LOS ANGELES-- The average price of a gallon of self-serve unleaded gasoline in Los Angeles County fell another 3.5 cents
today, dropping to $2.518 in the 58th consecutive daily decline.
The average is 21.2 cents less than a week ago, 91 cents less than at this time last month, 81.6 cents less than at this time last year and $2.108 less than the record high of $4.626 set June 21, the Oil Price Information
The average has fallen $1.249 over the past 58 days, including 2.1 cents from Tuesday to Wednesday.
The Orange County average fell 3.9 cents today to $2.483, 19.4 cents less than a week ago, 93.4 cents less than at this time last month, 84 cents less than at this time last year and $2.115 less than the record high of $4.598 set on June 19.
The Orange County average has declined for 59 consecutive days, shedding $1.264, including 1.6 cents from Tuesday to Wednesday.
The Los Angeles and Orange County averages have fallen to their levels of February 2007.
The dropping prices are a result of lower demand and a steady decline in crude oil prices caused by the worldwide economic downturn, and reduced speculation by futures traders, Jeffrey Spring of the Automobile Club of Southern California told City News Service.
The price of a barrel of crude fell to $54.67 in early trading today on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the lowest price since January 2007, then rebounded to $55.26. The price of a barrel of crude has fallen 62 percent since hitting a record high of $147.27 on July 11.
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The most recent decline follows the release of a report today by the International Energy Agency that concludes there will be less global demand for oil in 2009 than previously expected.
Crude oil costs account for two-thirds to three-quarters of the price of a gallon of gasoline, said Tupper Hull of the Western States Petroleum Association, a trade association representing major oil companies in six Western states.