Gas prices: Down 9% from July high

Gasoline prices retreat for the sixth straight day and are now down 9.4% from July's high of $4.114 but remain some 33% higher from a year earlier.

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NEW YORK ( -- Gas prices fell back, yet again, marking the sixth straight decline, according to a nationwide survey of credit card swipes at gasoline stations.

The average price of unleaded regular dropped 1.3 cents to $3.726 a gallon, from $3.739 a gallon, according to the survey released Tuesday by motorist group AAA.

While prices have now dropped some 13 cents and have stayed below the key $4 level for some time now. But prices still remain much higher from a year ago, when gas was selling for less than $3 a gallon. Current prices are still about 33% higher from a year earlier at this time.

Drivers can take some comfort in the fact that prices are 38.8 cents, or 9.4%, down from the record high price of $4.114 a gallon set on July 17. Gas prices had been moving higher following the devastation left behind by hurricanes Ike and Gustav.

With hurricane season is more than halfway done and the high summer driving season is over, the downward trend for gas prices may continue unless a major storm, once again, disrupts the flow of crude.

Oil prices had been moving lower since mid-July amid weakening demand, losing more than a third of its value since it reached a record of near $150 just two months ago.

But crude prices rallied back Monday, posting the biggest one-day dollare gain ever as the dollar slumped on the government's bailout plan and traders rushed to fill obligations as the October contract expired. Crude for November deliver - the new front-month contrac - was sharply lower Tuesday, down $2.07 to $107.32 a barre.

Meanwhile, only two states continue to report gas prices above $4 a gallon: Alaska and Georgia. Alaska continues to be the state with the most expensive gas prices, at $4.319 a gallon. The cheapest gas can still be found in New Jersey, where gas cost $3.447 a gallon, according to AAA's Web site. To top of page

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