Diesel edges up nearly 1 cent

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The national retail price of diesel rose for the second straight week, adding 0.9-cent a gallon to an average of $2.928 for the week ending Aug. 2. The price, which began rising the week before after a four-week decline, is 37.8 cents higher than the same week last year, according to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration.

The only region where diesel prices fell on average was New England, where prices were 0.5-cent lower than the week before. And prices were flat in the Central Atlantic. Elsewhere, prices increases ranged 0.7-cent in California to 1.7 cents in Rocky Mountain states.

As usual, prices were highest in California at $3.132 a gallon, followed by $3.071 in other West Coast states. The nation’s least expensive diesel by region, $2.887, was found on the Gulf Coast.

DOE’s latest monthly short-term energy outlook projects that diesel will average $2.98 this year and $3.13 in 2011; last year, diesel averaged $2.46 a gallon.