Reversing a recent trend in the other direction, the average
national retail price of diesel has increased from last week’s average of
$1.874 per gallon to $1.912, the U.S. Energy Department announced Sept. 20.
Oil prices surpassed $46 a barrel as supply constraints in
the United States and Russia tested the nerves of a market already edgy about
the world's limited production capacity and rising demand, The Associated
Cash-strapped Russian oil giant Yukos said it would halt
some oil exports to China, while U.S. petroleum inventories were expected to
decline again this week due to production, refining and shipping delays caused
by Hurricane Ivan.
While workers who had been
evacuated from oil production platforms and refineries in and around the Gulf
of Mexico last week are returning to work, analysts are uncertain about how
long it will take for shipments to resume at normal levels.
About 7.8 million barrels of oil
would have been produced had operations not been shut since last Monday,
according to reports from the federal Minerals Management Service. That is
equivalent to 1.3 percent of total annual production in the region.
The highest prices in the nation continue in California,
where the price currently averages $2.152 per gallon, and in the West Coast
region, where the price stands at $2.088.
Meanwhile, the $1.90 mark was passed in New England, where
the price is $1.988; the Central Atlantic, where the price is $1.973 and the
Rocky Mountain states, where the price is $1.937; and the East Coast where
prices are $1.905.
Other prices: $1.829
in the Lower Atlantic states, $1.882 in the Midwest and $1.868 in the Gulf