The national average price-per-gallon
for diesel fuel jumped nearly 4 cents Monday, Jan. 31, to $1.992
compared with last week’s average of $1.959, the Energy Department reported.
The price boost marks the highest diesel has been since
The highest average prices in the nation continue to be found
in the New England region, where the average cost is $2.225.
Among the higher average prices were in the Central Atlantic
region, at $2.172; California, at $2.126; the West Coast region, at $2.085; and
the East Coast region, at $2.048.
Other prices included the Lower Atlantic region, at $1.979;
the Midwest region, at $1.954; the Rocky Mountain region, at $1.946; and the
Gulf Coast region, at $1.94.
prices fell to the lowest in almost three weeks after OPEC agreed to leave
production targets unchanged and Iraq’s elections passed without attacks on
pipelines and other infrastructure.
Analysts said forecasts of more mild weather in the United
States was adding to the downward pressure on prices.
Light, sweet crude for delivery in March fell 48 cents to
$46.70 a barrel in afternoon trade on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Earlier
in the day, prices touched $46.01, the lowest since Jan. 12.
February heating oil was down 3.6 cents at $1.3020 per
OPEC ministers, who met Sunday in Vienna, Austria, left
their daily output quota unchanged at 27 million barrels, citing anticipated
strong demand and volatile markets for maintaining production.
The cartel added that oil prices near $50 per barrel would
remain high through the spring.
OPEC agreed in December to cut output by 1 million barrels a
day starting Jan. 1 to bring output closer to its self-imposed output ceiling
of 27 million barrels.
Iranian oil minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh also said members
will study a new price target because the current $22 to $28 a barrel goal is