HOUSTON (AP) - Retail gasoline prices in Texas and nationwide have slipped a penny this week.
The Beaumont average is down a penny at $3.64. That's 12 cents higher than the $3.52 average at this time one year ago. The record high in Beaumont was $4 a gallon in July 2008.
AAA Texas on Thursday reported the statewide average price at the pump stood at $3.66 per gallon. Drivers nationwide are paying an average $3.82 per gallon.
Texarkana has the most expensive gasoline in Texas at $3.72 per gallon. The association survey found that the cheapest gasoline statewide is in El Paso, at $3.44 per gallon.
AAA says gasoline prices spiked last week as the Gulf Coast braced for Hurricane Isaac and some refineries shut down. Prices weakened once the market determined Isaac would have a limited impact on long-term production.
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IRVING - From AAA Texas - Drivers in the state of Texas are now paying $3.66 for a gallon of regular unleaded fuel, which is down one cent from last week, according to the AAA Texas Weekend Gas Watch. Motorists in Texarkana are paying the most on average at $3.72, and drivers in El Paso are paying the least at $3.44. Drivers in the Lone Star State are paying about 16 cents less than the national average of $3.82, which also decreased a penny from last week.
National gas prices saw a spike last week as the Gulf Coast braced for Hurricane Isaac. Refineries totaling more than one million barrels per day of production capacity had announced closures in preparation for the storm and wholesale gasoline prices in regions supplied by these facilities surged higher. But those prices weakened once the market determined the storm would have a limited impact on long-term production.
AAA analysts expect prices at the pump will decline heading toward the end of the year as demand decreases with the end of the summer driving season, refineries switch to less expensive winter-blend gasoline, and the hurricane season ends in November.
""We're hopeful even more relief is on the way soon," said AAA Texas/New Mexico Representative Doug Shupe. "Right now Texans are paying about $52 to fill up a typical 14-gallon size tank of gas. We encourage people to continue to maintain their vehicles according to manufacturer's recommendations to maximize their fuel efficiency."
To help consumers identify quality auto repair shops that can assist in the maintenance and repair of their vehicles, AAA offers the Approved Auto Repair program as a free public service. AAA-approved repair facilities meet and maintain high professional standards for training, equipment, cleanliness and customer service. Motorists can look for the Approved Auto Repair sign at local auto repair facilities, or search for a nearby AAA-approved shop online at AAA.com/Repair.