Statewide gas prices decrease

In Texas the average price for a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline decreased a nickel since last week according to the AAA Texas Weekend Gas Watch. The national average dropped seven cents.The statewide average is $3.52 and the national average is $3.61. The Texas statewide average is nine cents below the national average.The least expensive gasoline is in Beaumont, where prices decreased by a nickel, and the average price per gallon is now $3.46. Corpus Christi is reporting the most expensive average in the state at $3.55 for a gallon of regular unleaded. Prices in Corpus dropped three cents since last week. The average price of gasoline in Sweetwater is currently $3.45 per gallon.What’s driving the market?• Crude oil dropped another four dollars moving from an average of $97 per barrel to $93 per barrel. This is a $20 per barrel decline in prices since reaching the multi-year high of $113 per barrel in late April of this year. • High crude oil and gasoline prices in recent months have led to declining demand and slowed global economic growth. Data released by the Federal Highway Administration reported that vehicle miles traveled during April 2011 were down 2.4% compared to the same month last year. This decline is widely attributed to the spike in crude oil prices beginning in mid-February that set off the rapid rise of gasoline at the pump. “Many oil analysts believe retail gasoline prices may have peaked in early May. Since that time, the average price of a gallon of regular unleaded in Texas has dropped about 30 cents. However, prices in Texas are about 90 cents more than they were this time a year ago. Texas motorists are paying about $50 for an average fill-up. That same tank was $36 at this time last year," said AAA Texas/New Mexico Public Affairs Representative Sarah Schimmer in Houston.