Gas prices up to record high
Two cent rise in national average surpasses Katrina high, but end to climb is seen

ATLANTA (CNN) -- Gas prices rose nearly two cents over the past two weeks, to a record high of $3.02 per gallon of self-serve regular, a national survey reported Sunday.

The survey, carried out July 7 and July 21, tallied prices at about 5,000 gas stations and found that self-serve regular rose 1.98 cents per gallon, to a national average of $3.0150, said Trilby Lundberg, publisher of the "Lundberg Survey."

Sunday's uptick bests by a third of a penny the prior record, which was set last Sept. 9 in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, Lundberg said.

But, adjusted for inflation, Sunday's price remains 15 cents lower than what it was in March 1981, she added.

And, given that demand in recent days has been flat or shrinking, prices are unlikely to continue upward, Lundberg suggested. "The overall gasoline supply is not tight," she said.

The trend in gas prices typically follows that of crude, and crude prices for West Texas Intermediate slipped on the NYMEX from more than $77 per barrel on July 14 to $74.43 last week, she said.

Absent storms resulting in damage to refineries -- as occurred last year with Hurricanes Katrina and Rita -- or new threats to world oil supplies, prices should drop, she said.

Sunday's poll found that drivers in Charleston, S.C., paid the least, at an average of $2.77 per gallon; drivers in San Diego, Calif., paid the most, at $3.28.

Here are some other prices:

-- Atlanta: $3.00

-- Charleston, W. Va.: $2.99

-- Houston: $2.93

-- Milwaukee: $3.20

-- Omaha, Neb.: $2.92

-- Salt Lake City: $2.80

-- Seattle: $3.02

-- Wilmington, Del.: $3.12


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