A gallon of regular no-lead hit the $2.50 mark, on average, this morning in the five-county Philadelphia area, according to AAA Mid-Atlantic.

That average was up 1 cent overnight, and up 39 cents from a month ago.

A similar 1-cent move in South Jersey had the average there at $2.32 a gallon, up 40 cents from this time last month.

The national average was up 2 cents, to $2.47, which represents a 42-cent increase in a month.

The diesel average was down 1 cent in the Philly area (to $2.57), up 1 cent in South Jersey (to $2.22), and up 1 cent nationwide ($2.35).

Meanwhile, oil prices extended a rally to above $66 a barrel to hit a fresh six-month high, after the United States reported a fall in oil inventories and further signs of an improving economy.

OPEC oil ministers, who on Thursday agreed to leave production levels unchanged, expected the rally to continue until 2010. "I think that by year end we will see $70 to $75," Abdalla Salem El Badri, secretary general of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, said Friday in Vienna.

Benchmark crude for July delivery was up $1.16 cents to $66.24 a barrel by late morning in Europe in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. On Thursday, the contract rose $1.63 to settle at $65.08, a six-month high and almost double the lows reached in March, when it fell below $35 a barrel.

The Energy Department's Energy Information Administration on Thursday said U.S. oil supplies dropped unexpectedly by 5.4 million barrels last week. Though crude inventories remain near 19-year highs, it was the third week in a row that supplies have fallen.