The average price of a gallon of self-serve regular gasoline in Los Angeles County rose one-tenth of a cent on Thursday, the 10th consecutive day it has changed by two-tenths of a cent or less.
The average price of $4.251 is four-tenths of a cent more than one week ago, 7.7 cents higher than one month ago and $1.218 greater than one year ago, according to figures from the AAA and Oil Price Information Service.
The average price has risen $1.019 since the start of the year to its highest amount since Oct. 9, 2019, mainly because of a run of 59 increases in 60 days totaling 57.9 cents that ended March 21.
The primary reasons for the sharp price increase since the start of the year are "higher oil prices and higher demand as the economy reopens and more people began returning to work and travel," said Marie Montgomery, a public relations specialist with the Automobile Club of Southern California.
The Orange County average price dropped two-tenths of a cent, the 10th time in 11 days it has changed by two-tenths of a cent or less. The average price of $4.204 is six-tenths of a cent more than one week ago, 7.6 cents higher than one month ago and $1.20 greater than one year ago.
The Orange County average price has risen 99.6 cents since the start of the year, mainly because of a run of 72 increases in 73 days totaling 68.1 cents that ended March 20.
The large price increases from one year ago are the result of significant decreases during the early stage of the coronavirus pandemic, when driving and demand dropped substantially because of stay-at-home orders intended to reduce the spread of the virus.