News > Jobs & Economy
    SAVE   |   EMAIL   |   PRINT   |   RSS  
Gas prices shift upward
AAA report: Pump prices turn up, gaining by less than a penny across the board.
September 29, 2005: 10:58 AM EDT
Video More video
New Jersey Attorney General Peter Harvey says his state is cracking down on price gouging at gas stations (September 28)
Play video

NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - Retail gasoline prices continued to seesaw Thursday, climbing by less than a penny, according to AAA's daily fuel gauge report.

The national average for regular unleaded gasoline rose to $2.815 a gallon from $2.811 Wednesday, according to the travel club. Prices had edged lower in the Wednesday report by 0.2 cent.

Gasoline prices have retreated since Labor Day, when they crested at $3.057 following Hurricane Katrina. Pump prices have fluctuated after Hurricane Rita hit the Gulf Coast on Saturday.

Rita caused significant damage when it slammed into the Texas-Louisiana Gulf Coast early Saturday morning with 120 mph winds, although it was less destructive than Hurricane Katrina.

While crude oil output was shut by the storm, many Texas refineries were spared.

The average cost of a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline was $1.912 a year ago, AAA reported.

The publisher of the Lundberg survey, a comparable study of gas prices around the U.S. released Sunday, believed that prices will probably fall another 10 to 20 cents per gallon once refineries shuttered by Katrina and Rita come back online.

Mid-grade and premium gasoline also rose across the country Thursday. The nationwide average at the pump for mid-grade gasoline rose to $2.989 from $2.985 a gallon Wednesday. Premium gasoline also climbed by less than a penny to $3.098 gallon from $3.093, AAA reported.

Diesel prices were the biggest gainer, rising by over a penny to $2.887 from Wednesday's price of $2.876.

AAA's "Daily Fuel Gauge Report" revealed that gasoline in Hawaii was the most expensive in the country, with the average cost of regular unleaded being $3.275. Gas in Oklahoma was the cheapest, with regular unleaded at $2.612, on average.

As gas prices rise, more people are buying gasoline on credit, according to the National Association of Convenience Stores. The association told CNN that its members report nearly 80 percent of gas transactions are now being made by credit or debit card.

In the first half of the year, that figure was 70 percent -- compared to 54 percent in the first half of 2004 and 53 percent in 2003.

And Reuters reported Wednesday that a record number of Americans delayed making credit card payments in the second quarter as rising gasoline prices made it tougher for many people to pay their bills.

The American Bankers Association said the percentage of card accounts 30 days or more past due rose to 4.81 percent from 4.76 percent in the first quarter. The latter number was revised upward from 4.03 percent.

-- from staff and wire reports


Hybrids...worth the hype? Click here.

Click here for CNN/Money's special report 'Oil Crunch 2005'.  Top of page

Follow the news that matters to you. Create your own alert to be notified on topics you're interested in.

Or, visit Popular Alerts for suggestions.
Manage alerts | What is this?