Average diesel price falls to $1.501

The U.S. average retail price of diesel fuel fell 0.2 cent per gallon to $1.501, led by a significant drop along the West Coast, the Department of Energy reported. This was only the second decrease in the past nine weeks for trucking's dominant fuel. Diesel had risen 8.1 cents since reaching $1.42 on June 30, the lowest price thus far in 2003. Diesel was 11.3 cents higher than the corresponding week a year ago, according to DOE figures. DOE also said that the average price for regular unleaded gasoline declined 0.1 cent to $1.746 per gallon. Gasoline, used by about one-third of commercial trucking, had set an all-time record high last week. Meanwhile, the price of crude oil futures in New York plunged to their biggest decline in five months on speculation refiners would buy less as summer's end cuts gasoline demand, Bloomberg reported. Crude oil for October delivery fell $2.05, or 6.5%, to $29.52 a barrel at the 2:30 p.m. close of floor trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. That's the biggest daily decline since March 18 and the lowest close since June 27.DOE said that the overall diesel decrease was due mainly to a dip of 2.6 cents on the West Coast to $1.681. However, the Rocky Mountain region reported a 1.5-cent increase.

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