The national average cost of on-highway diesel has posted its fifth weekly increase but prices have started to moderate a little in some parts of the country, according to new U.S. Energy Department figures.

It has gained 0.8 cent over the past week, hitting $2.944 per gallon, its highest price since Jan. 12, following steep declines that began last summer with it hitting a five-year low last month. Compared to this week in 2014 the price is down by nearly $1.08 per gallon.

Regionally, average prices fell by 0.1 cent in the Gulf Coast states to $2.795 per gallon, the least expensive price in the country, along with declining by the same amount in the West Coast region at $3.096 per gallon. Prices fell slightly more in the West Coast region, minus California, 0.8 cent to $2.926.

In all other sections of the country prices increased from between 0.2 cent in the Midwest, hitting $2.852 per gallon, to 4.1 cents in New England at $3.332 per gallon, the second most expensive section in the country. The Central Atlantic region was the most expensive at $3.33, up 4 cents over the past week.

As for regular-grade gasoline, it increased far less than its double-digit hike a week earlier, adding 1.4 cents, for a national average of $2.487, its sixth straight weekly increase. Compared to a year ago it is $1.025 less.

Gasoline prices increased in all regions but the Midwest, where it fell 3.9 cents to $2.339. It ranges from a low of $2.228 in the Gulf Coast region to a high of $3.182 in the West Coast region.

Meantime, crude oil prices drifted higher on Monday by 39 cents at the close of trading in New York, settling at $50 per barrel after being as high as more than $52 at one point last week.

Compared to last Tuesday’s opening price Monday’s level at the market close is only 20 cents higher and it posted its third weekly decline in a row last week, while overseas crude fell 4.6% last week, it’s biggest weekly loss in nearly two months.

This came as the investment firm Goldman Sachs said in a note to investors it expects oil to reverse recent gains it has made since its plunge of more than 50% from last summer. It believes the black gold will drop back to $40 per barrel due to rising global inventories of crude.

Also helping to push oil back down has been a rise in the value of the dollar against major foreign currencies, making it less of an attractive buy for overseas investors.

Originally posted on Trucking Info

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Evan Lockridge

Evan Lockridge

Former Business Contributing Editor

Trucking journalist since 1990, in the news business since early ‘80s.

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