The national average price for regular unleaded gas inched downward a fraction of a penny the past week as refinery issues in the Midwest offset widespread price declines in most areas. The AAA Daily Fuel Gauge Report said the national average for a gallon of regular unleaded gas was $3.471 a gallon Thursday, down slightly from last week's $3.475 average.
Most states saw pump prices dip by at least a few cents, but lower production at refineries in the Midwest caused price increases in the Great lakes area, Missouri, Oklahoma and other states. "These increases can be traced back to refinery problems and maintenance at several facilities supplying the region: two in Kansas; BP's refinery in Whiting, Ind.; and ExxonMobil's refinery in Joliet, Ill., which is running at reduced rates while conducting work," AAA said in its weekly analysis of pump prices.