Gas Prices Fall for Third Straight Week

U.S. retail gasoline prices (search) fell for the third week in a row, but the small savings was barely noticeable at the pump, the government said on Monday.

The national price for regular unleaded gasoline dropped a slight 0.1 cent over the past week to just under $2.24 a gallon, up 39 cents from a year ago, according to a weekly survey of service stations by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (search).

Gasoline prices have fallen from the record high of $2.28 a gallon three weeks ago because of the sharp decline in crude oil costs.

Pump prices could go higher closer to the Memorial Day holiday at the end of May, the traditional start of the U.S. summer vacation season. The EIA has forecast gasoline will peak this month at $2.35 a gallon.

The West Coast had the most expensive regular unleaded gasoline, with the price down half a penny to $2.51 a gallon. San Francisco topped the EIA's survey of cities, with the price of gasoline down 2 cents at $2.63 a gallon.

The Gulf Coast states had the cheapest fuel, with the price down almost a penny at $2.13 per gallon. Among major cities, Houston had the best deal at the pump, with fuel down 0.4 cent at $2.08 a gallon.

The weekly EIA report also showed gasoline prices were down 0.9 cent at $2.57 in Los Angeles; down 0.2 cent at $2.47 in Seattle; down 1.6 cent at $2.33 in Miami; down 1.4 cent at $2.26 in Chicago; up 3 cents at $2.23 in New York City, up 0.7 cent at $2.20 in Boston and down 0.8 cent at $2.20 in Denver.

Separately, the price for diesel fuel dropped 2.7 cents $2.26 a gallon, up 55 cents from last year, the EIA said.

Truckers on the West Coast paid the most for diesel at $2.53 a gallon, down 1.9 cents from last week. The Midwest states had the cheapest diesel at $2.19 a gallon, down 3.6 cents.