UPDATED -- The average cost of on-highway diesel in the U.S. has fallen for the third consecutive week, hitting its lowest level since late November, according to new U.S. Energy Department numbers.
It declined 2.5 cents from last week, hitting $3.869, and is 3.4 cents lower than the same time last year. Over the past three weeks the price is down 5.1 cents.
Prices fell in all parts of the country with the biggest decline coming from the Central Atlantic section, 3.7 cents, for an average of $4.014, with the smallest in the Rocky Mountain region, down 0.7 cent, for an average of $3.889.
Compared to a year ago, prices are slightly higher in the New England, Central Atlantic and Rocky Mountain sections of the country, but are lower in all other parts.
Diesel ranges from a high of $4.052 in New England, down 2.6 cents from a week ago, to a low of $3.773 in the Gulf Coast states, 0.7 cent less over the same time period.
Meantime, the average cost of regular-grade gasoline has also fallen for the third straight week and hitting its lowest price since late March. It has declined 4.2 cents over the past week for an average of $3.593, which is also 8.9 cents less than a year ago.
It ranges from a high of $3.957 in the West Coast region to a low of $3.394 in the Gulf Coast region. Prices in all parts of the country are down over the past week.
The decline in fuel prices came as the price of oil increased $1.46 in New York trading on Monday, settling at $104.59 per barrel.
Compared to last Tuesday’s opening price it is up more than $3.50. The Monday increase was the third hike of $1 or more in three out of the last four trading days and is the first time it closed above the $104 mark since July 3.
Concerns about U.S. refineries running at high production rates, reducing stockpiles, along with continuing violence in Iraq and the Gaza Strip and tensions over Russia in the wake of the Malaysian Airlines crash in Ukraine, all led to the recent price hike in crude.
Update adds gasoline prices.