NEW YORK -- Gasoline prices have finally begun their seasonal slide. Better late than never.
The national average retail price has fallen for 10 straight days and is now $3.74 per gallon. That's 13 cents below the fall peak of $3.87 reached on Sept. 14, although still higher than ever for this time of year.
In Tampa, the average price Thursday was $3.60, about 14 cents cheaper than a month ago, according to GasBuddy.com. The Florida average was about $3.67, a 13-cent drop from a month ago.
Gasoline prices typically decline in the fall as refiners switch to cheaper fuel blends and drivers take a break from road trips. This year, a series of refinery and pipeline problems sent gasoline supplies plummeting and prices soaring.
The problems have begun to clear up, though, and prices are responding. Tom Kloza, Chief Oil Analyst at the Oil Price Information Service, predicts drops of 5 cents to 15 cents per week for the next three weeks.
By The Associated Press