Gas prices on decline; drop 15 cents from last month

On average statewide, prices are $3.63 a gallon

Gasoline prices continue declining, dropping 15 cents a gallon from a month ago for a gallon of regular unleaded in Florida, according to the AAA.

On average statewide, prices are $3.63 a gallon.

AAA spokeswoman Jessica Brady expects the decline to continue, bringing prices at the pump closer to what they where a year ago: $3.46 a gallon.

She attributes that to oil supplies being up while demand is down. Oil stockpiles in the United States are at a two-month high while production is at a 17-year high. At the same time, demand for oil is down 6.2 percent, she said.

"We're back to the basic fundamentals of supply and demand moving the market," she said.

Part of that is the continuing European debt crisis affecting both demand and lowering prices.

On Friday a barrel of oil sold for $90, which is $1.81 less than a week ago.

Retail gasoline prices peaked around Labor Day when a gallon of regular unleaded, in Florida, sold for an average of $3.80. That came after a 10-week-long increase. Then prices settled and began what oil price experts say is the usual decline going into the winter months when refineries produce a lower-cost winter blend.

But each year, in recent years, the prices have tended to slightly above the prior year's levels.

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