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California gas prices expected to dip this summer

Average gasoline prices now hovering above $4 a gallon

As the busy summer travel season approaches, motorists in California can expect to see a dip in gas prices, according to AAA Northern California's monthly gas survey.

The average price of gas has dropped 6 cents in the last week, with current prices in California hovering about $4.18 per gallon.

Still, prices overall in the San Francisco area are up 2.8 percent over the past year, according to information released last week by the U.S. Department of Labor.

Along with being up 2.8 percent over the past 12 months, prices have increased 1.2 percent in the San Francisco area since February.

Even with the dip in gasoline prices, however, the AAA survey pointed out that Northern California's average price for a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline is up 17 cents per gallon over last month, to $4.15.

The national average price per gallon on Tuesday was $3.64, and has fallen for the past 14 days.

AAA says prices are expected to fall over the summer due to increased supplies and the relative absence of disruptions in production and distribution.

"Barring any unforeseen refinery maintenance issues that could push California gas prices up temporarily, state prices should continue to fall as we approach the Memorial Day holiday," said AAA Northern California spokeswoman, Cynthia Harris.

Of all the metro areas tracked by AAA in Northern California, San Mateo has the highest gas price at $4.26 per gallon of unleaded regular.

Dennis Culver, Bay City News

— Bay City News Service

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