Gas prices down 25 cents a gallon in month

Gas prices down 25 cents a gallon in month

November 1st, 2012 by Staff Reports and Associated Press in Business Around the Region

Gas prices tile

Photo by WRCB-TV Channel 3 /Times Free Press.

Gas prices drop

* $3.26 -- Average price per gallon of regular gas in Chattanooga, down a penny from the previous day

* $3.52 -- Average price per gallon of regular gas nationwide, down 2 cents a gallon from the previous day

* 25.4 cents -- Drop in local gas prices in the past month

* $3.44 -- Average price of a gallon of gas a year ago

Source: AAA Fuel Gauge Survey

Many Halloween travelers and tricksters got an extra treat Wednesday when they filled up their gas tank.

Gasoline prices fell another penny a gallon in Chattanooga on Wednesday, bringing the average price of a gallon of gas down by more than 25 cents a gallon in the past month and more than 40 cents a gallon below this summer's peak prices.

According to the AAA fuel gauge survey of area gas stations, the average price of regular gas in Chattanooga on Wednesday was just over $3.27 a gallon, down 9 cents a gallon from a week ago and 25.4 cents a gallon below the price a month ago.

A year ago, however, gas prices in Chattanooga averaged just over $3.26 a gallon, or a penny below Wednesday's average price.

Hurricane Sandy has disrupted both U.S. production and consumption of gas this week as it struck the Atlantic coast.

While the storm shut down two of the Northeast's nine refineries, driving and gas consumption in the region also plunged with many roads impassable and schools and businesses closed in more than a half dozen states.

Tom Kloza, chief oil analyst at OPIS, predicted the average nationwide price of gasoline will fall at least another couple of pennies a gallon in the next couple of weeks, with the steepest declines in the Southeast and on the West Coast.

"The product is available and I don't anticipate prolonged supply shortages," he said. "There is gasoline in various tanks, but thanks to flooding or electricity or traffic chaos, it can't be accessed."

Benchmark crude oil prices rose 39 cents a gallon Wednesday to $86.07 per barrel in New York.

Brent crude, which is used to price international varieties of oil, fell 22 cents to $108.86 per barrel in London.

"It will take some time before we can get demand anywhere close to normal," independent energy analyst Phil Flynn wrote in his daily energy report this week. "Many people are staying home if possible."