The national average retail price of a gallon of diesel declined for the third consecutive week, this time falling 4.1 cents to $2.980 for the week ending Monday, May 31. The price, the lowest in nine weeks, has fallen 14.7 cents in the past three weeks after six consecutive weeks of increases. Still, this week’s price is 62.8 cents higher than the same week last year, according to the U.S. Department of Energy, which delayed its weekly roundup of fuel prices one day because of the Memorial Day holiday.
All regions tracked by DOE saw price decreases. The biggest decrease, 5.0 cents, was found on the West Coast, where prices fell to $3.082. The smallest decrease, 3.1 cents, was found in the Lower Atlantic, where prices fell to $2.950.
The nation’s most expensive diesel by region, $3.121, was found in the Central Atlantic, where prices fell 4.4 cents. The nation’s least expensive diesel by region, $2.936, was found on the Gulf Coast, where prices fell 4.1 cents.
California, which DOE tracks separately for its weekly update, saw a price decrease of 6.8 cents to $3.094; still, that price is 59.2 cents higher than the same week last year.
DOE’s latest monthly short-term energy outlook projects that diesel will average $3.05 this year and $3.20 in 2011; last year, diesel averaged $2.46 a gallon.