Pain at the pump: After 2 months, are you seeing a slowdown in rising gas prices?

A few ways to save fuel

With gas prices skyrocketing, saving fuel is essential. Here are a few ways to conserve fuel.
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With gas prices skyrocketing, saving fuel is essential. Here are a few ways to conserve fuel.

Gas prices in Fresno and other markets in the central San Joaquin Valley ticked up by another few pennies per gallon over the past week, continuing an unrelenting two-month trend of rising fuel prices with which motorists continue to cope.

The average price for regular unleaded gasoline was reported at $4.08 per gallon on Monday in Fresno, according to AAA Gas Prices. That’s a nickel more than pump prices a week ago and 43 cents higher than on April 6, one month earlier. Almost two months go, on March 11, the average price was $3.24 per gallon, or about 84 cents less than on Monday.

Statewide, the average pump price was $4.10 per gallon, up two cents from a week ago and 36 cents from a month ago. But there are signs that the increases are starting to level off. In San Francisco, the average price fell by almost six cents per gallon. In Los Angeles, Orange County, Riverside, San Bernardino and Ventura, the average prices either held steady or dropped by a few tenths of a penny.

In Fresno, GasBuddy.com’s real-time crowdsourced data showed that the lowest cash price for regular unleaded on Monday morning was $3.69 per gallon at a Fast ‘N’ Easy convenience store at Fresno Street and Clinton Avenue in central Fresno. The highest price reported by GasBuddy users was $4.49 per gallon at a Chevron station at Clinton and Blythe avenues in west-central Fresno.

Nationwide, the average price of $2.90 per gallon was up only a penny from last week, and remains far below the averages in California and Valley communities. Average prices were either stable or fell in 27 states across the country.

“It appears that large increases in gas prices have begun to fade to a distant memory, lending credibility to the notion that gas prices may be close to peaking for the time being,” GasBuddy’s head of petroleum analysis, Patrick DeHaan, wrote in a company blog post on Monday. “For now, I believe we’re close to seeing gas prices peak in the next few weeks or so in most of the U.S., and barring any future unexpected outages, I think most of the country has seen the risk of big prices increases melt away.”

DeHaan said falling oil crude oil prices may be linked to concerns that the U.S. and China remain further apart on a trade deal than once thought, particularly “with President Trump’s shocking warning Sunday about raising tariffs on China.” The lack of a trade deal represents a possible risk to recent growth in the U.S. economy and potentially create lower oil demand, DeHaan added.

Lifelong Valley resident Tim Sheehan has worked in the Valley as a reporter and editor since 1986, and has been at The Fresno Bee since 1998. He is currently The Bee’s data reporter and covers California’s high-speed rail project and other transportation issues. He grew up in Madera, has a journalism degree from Fresno State and a master’s degree in leadership studies from Fresno Pacific University.