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Nov-11-2008 16:53printcomments

Gas Prices in Oregon Hit Lowest Point Since March 2006

Four U.S. states have averages below $2.
The Arco station on South Commercial in Salem, 11-11-08

(PORTLAND, Ore.) - It has been more than two and a half years since gas prices have been this low in Oregon. The statewide average for regular unleaded drops another 19 cents this week to $2.38, the lowest it's been since March 2006. The national average falls another 17 cents to $2.22 and is at its lowest level since mid-February 2007.

AAA Oregon Public Affairs Director Marie Dodds says the price of gas has been falling steadily since September, after Hurricanes Gustav and Ike battered the Gulf Coast.

"Oregon's average is down 44% from the record high of $4.29 set on July 3, 2008, while the national average is down 46% from its record high of $4.11 set on July 17th of this year," Dodds said.

Crude oil prices have been around $59 a barrel in trading today, which is about a 60% drop from the record high of $147 per barrel set on July 11, 2008. Investors are concerned about the troubled global economy and a decreasing demand for fuel.

Dodds says AAA does continue to project lower gas prices, and a national average of $2 per gallon is still a possibility before the end of the year. Because gas prices are well below the record highs we saw during the summer, AAA expects more Americans to travel over the Thanksgiving holiday compared to last year. Our annual Thanksgiving holiday travel forecast will be released next week.

Salem's average for a gallon of regular is $2.285 and prices in the capitol city are much lower at some stations. Evidence of that is in the photo accompanying this story. The average in Portland is $2.327 and Eugene/Springfield area drivers are paying $2.392 at the pump. The average cost for gas in the Medford/Ashland region is $2.531. Motorists in Vancouver, Washington are paying an average of $2.368 for self-serve regular.

The average price of gas is below $2 in four states: Missouri, Oklahoma, Ohio and Indiana. Oregon's gas prices are 11th highest in the nation for the second week in a row. This week two states have gas at or above $3 per gallon, same as last week. The most expensive gas in the country for the 20th week in a row is Alaska at $3.36, followed by Hawaii at $3.13, New York at $2.61, Vermont at $2.54 and California at $2.52. Washington is 14th highest, up from 15th last week, with its statewide average falling 18 cents to $2.36. Missouri edges out Oklahoma for the least expensive gas in the country at $1.92.

Diesel prices also continue to fall. Oregon's average drops 9 cents this week to $3.17, while the national average loses 14 cents to $3.09. Both are at their lowest point since early October of 2007. Hawaii has the highest statewide average price for diesel again this week at $4.65, followed by Alaska at $4.28, New York at $3.60, District of Columbia at $3.53, and Connecticut at $3.46. Oregon's diesel prices are 15th most expensive this week, up from 21st last week. Washington's diesel prices are 13th highest, up from 16th last week. A year ago, the national average for diesel was $3.45 and Oregon's average was $3.61.

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