For the fourth consecutive week, the U.S. average retail price for regular gasoline decreased, falling 6.7 cents to 300.9 cents per gallon as of June 18, 2007. Prices are 13.8 cents per gallon higher than this time last year. All regions reported price decreases. East Coast prices dropped 4.6 cents to 297.6 cents per gallon. The largest regional decrease was in the Midwest, where prices fell 8.9 cents to 298.4 cents per gallon, while prices for the Gulf Coast decreased 5.9 cents to 290.3 cents per gallon. Rocky Mountain prices fell 4.4 cents to 318.1 cents per gallon but remain 33.8 cents per gallon above last year's price. West Coast prices were down 7.7 cents to 318.8 cents per gallon. The average price for regular grade in California was down 8.4 cents to 323.6 cents per gallon.
The good news in this report is gas and oil stockpiles are increasing. And gas production is finally at strong levels as well. However, gas demand is also 1.71% higher than the same time last year.
I doubt we're going to see gas prices drop much below last years levels at this point, which means consumers will get hit with high gas bills for the next 2-3 months. That means we could see a dent in lower-income based consumer behavior at stores like Wal-Mart an Dollar General.