CAMARILLE, Calif. - A weakening euro has contributed to the lower cost of crude oil, which spells more relief at the pump for Americans, Bloomberg News reports. A new Lundberg Survey found that the average cost of regular gasoline dropped 15.9 cents over the last three weeks to reach $3.6243 a gallon. That cost is 11.62 cents below a year ago.
"Europeansï¿½ï¿½ misfortunes are American fuel consumers gain," said Trilby Lundberg, president of Lundberg Survey. "Our dollar looks strong against the weaker euro, which has reduced the price of crude."
West Texas Intermediate crude for July delivery on the New York Mercantile Exchange declined 8.1%, falling $7.38 to stop at $84.10 a barrel last Friday. Futures have plummeted 23% since attaining a year-to-date record of $109.77 on February 24.
Contributing to the decline is the worsening European debt crisis and slowing growth in China and the United States. For the first time in 10 years, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries will likely keep output at the same levels at its June 14 meeting, staying at 30 million barrels a day.
Nine out of 25 analysts (36%) predict crude oil prices will increase through this Friday. Eight analysts (32%) forecast that futures would drop, with another eight saying things will stay the same.
Currently, Seattle took the top place as having the highest price in the contingent 48 states with an average of $4.22 a gallon, according to Lundberg. Jackson, Miss., boasted the lowest price with an average of $3.18 a gallon.