As gasoline prices keep falling at the pump, analysts are wondering how low they can go.
Crude prices could continue to drop, in part because of lingering economic woes seem likely to keep demand down.
The national average is down to $3.54 for a gallon of regular, and in the city with the cheapest gas, St. Louis, the going rate was $3.08 a gallon as of Friday, according to the Lundberg Survey released Sunday.
Some Central Jersey stations are also in that ballpark. Two stations in Old Bridge, Middlesex County, and one in Marlboro, Monmouth County, have pegged regular at $3.07, while one Trenton station has $3.08 and another has $3.09, according to www.NewJerseyGasPrices.com.
With a drop of another dime possible, according to Lundberg, that could mean gas selling for less than $3 a gallon once again in the region.
And that's without crude prices falling more, which could happen.
"The worsening perceptions of the European economies means there's a potential for the damage to petroleum demand to go viral worldwide," analyst Trilby Lundberg told Bloomberg News.
A year ago, the average was $2.67 in the Philadelphia-South Jersey area, according to AAA Mid-Atlantic. As of Friday it was at $3.54, down about a half-dollar from the year's peak, $4.05, in the first week of May. The all-time high was $4.11, set in July 2008.
Nationwide this morning, the lowest prices were $2.59 at a station in New Orleans; $2.68 in Festus, Mo.; and $2.79 in Mount Gilead, Ohio, according to http://gasprices.mapquest.com. Well below the national averages, those are likely to be the result of special promotions, however.
In South Jersey, the cheapest gas is $3.19 at the Crown Point Truck Stop in West Deptford, according to www.NewJerseyGasPrices.com.
That matches the lowest price at Pennsylvania, at a Citgo in Ephrata, Lancaster County, according to www.PennsylvaniaGasPrices.com/.
In Philadelphia and its suburbs, the best price was $3.37 a gallon at a Hatfield Lukoil, according to http://go.philly.com/phillygasprices, a Philly.com page.
Another online tool is AAA's Fuel Price Finder, http://aaa.opisnet.com/index.aspx.
Shopping around using such tools can pay off, since the highest prices can be wallet busters.
A Voorhees Lukoil and a Malvern Sunoco each make their state's list of highest prices for regular, charging $3.89 a gallon.