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Gas prices break all-time record high of $4.64 a gallon


Southern California gas prices have shattered a 94-year record high, making 
it cheaper to fuel your vehicle with refrigerated milk than to buy gasoline. 

In San Diego, the current average price is $4.69 a gallon

The last record high was $4.64 a gallon in June of 2008 when WTI crude
cost $147 a barrel. Yesterday,WTI closed at $89 a barrel. 
Even when you adjust for inflation, the current average gas price of $4.69
a gallon is highest in U.S. history since 1918, when the national average for
a gasoline was an inflation-adjusted $3.75
Wholesale prices drive retail prices.
This morning, the wholesale prices being charged to unbranded dealers --
dealers who must purchase surplus fuel on the open market -- had dropped.
However, many wholesalers are posting a "lower" price, but aren't selling 
fuel, so the price reduction creates a statistical illusion of a downward 
moving market.
UCAN's gas project tracks selected wholesalers, and our average shows a decrease
of 23¢ a gallon since Thursday, but this huge downward move is still a
minor decline from a Mount Everest style price spike of 75¢ since
Monday. When the wholesale prices charged to both branded and unbranded dealers
are accounted for, the wholesale price increase since Monday has been
a monstrous 49¢ - roughly 42¢ on average for brand-name retailers and
40¢ for unbranded.
Our analysis shows that given current wholesale prices, an unbranded
independent dealer must charge a minimum price of $5.10 to $5.25 a
gallon in order to break even on a wholesale gasoline purchase after
paying for local, state and federal taxes.
At this time, brand name dealers are able to buy gasoline -- if it is
is available -- for as much as 50¢ less per gallon than unbranded dealers.
Normally, unbranded dealers are the price-cutters in the marketplace:
They force the major brands to compete on price. At this time, there is no
price competition to force brand name dealers to lower their prices. As
a result, prices are likely to continue rising until competition returns.
On Thursday, UCAN predicted that gas prices could increase by as much
as 40¢ a gallon by Monday, October 8. Currently, San Diego is just 4¢
away from making that prediction a reality.
San Diego CHANGE 10/4/2012 10/4/2012 Monday
SD RUL 36.2¢ 4.690 4.328 4.162
SD DSL 4.5¢ 4.500 4.455 4.431

Southern California 

    10/4/2012 10/4/2012 Monday
0.3620 San Diego RUL 4.690 4.328 4.162
0.0450 San Diego DSL 4.500 4.455 4.431
0.3140 Los Angeles RUL 4.661 4.347 4.184
0.0410 Los Angeles DSL 4.541 4.500 4.476
0.3200 Orange Cnty RUL 4.650 4.330 4.162
0.0370 Orange Cnty DSL 4.493 4.456 4.442
0.3230 San Bern RUL 4.621 4.298 4.146
0.0340 San Bern DSL 4.479 4.445 4.410
0.3298 SOCAL RUL 4.656 4.326 4.164
0.0393 SOCAL DSL Avg 4.503 4.464 4.440