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For Immediate Release: September 20, 2006
Media Contact: Rob Schlichting - 916-654-4989

Despite drop in refinery production,
retail prices continue to fall


Sacramento - Although last week's production of gasoline and diesel in California declined when compared to the previous week, output is better than at this time last year and retail prices continue to drop.

The Weekly Fuels Watch Report issued today by the California Energy Commission shows that production of California gasoline averaged 897,571 barrels a day for the week ending September 15, 2006. That represents an 8.2 percent decrease from the week before, but is still 1.5 percent better than at this time last year.

California gasoline inventories were off 4.8 percent from the previous week and are 2.1 percent below supplies one year ago.

The retail price of California gasoline fell for the fifth straight week. The statewide average for regular reached $2.85 a gallon for the week ending September 18, 2006, a decline of 10 cents from the previous week and a 36-cent drop since mid-August. Wholesale (rack) prices in the state averaged $1.90 a gallon on September 18, indicating retail prices will likely continue their slow downward slide. The national average price for regular fell to $2.50 a gallon.

Production of California's Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel (ULSD) dropped 9.1 percent for the week but remained 20.1 percent higher than comparable output a year ago. Inventories fell 5.0 percent from the previous week's totals but were still 9.7 percent more abundant than corresponding supplies this time in 2005. Retail prices of diesel fuel statewide dropped 13 cents, averaging $3.00 a gallon for the week ending September 18, 2006.

Today's entire Weekly Fuels Watch Report can be seen on the Energy Commission's Web site at:

www.energy.ca.gov/database/fore

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Editor's note:

The figures released today are preliminary and may change slightly over time. This summer the Energy Commission is also posting a weekly Petroleum Watch report, which provides useful background information on petroleum markets and California refineries. You can find the report on the Energy Commission's Web site at:

www.energy.ca.gov/consumerfuels

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