There was no change overnight in the average for a gallon of regular no-lead at the national level ($2.62) and in South Jersey ($2.43), but the average was up 1 cent in the five-county Philadelphia area (to $2.62), according to AAA Mid-Atlantic.

Diesel's national average also was unchanged ($2.52), up 1 cent in South Jersey (to $2.40), and unchanged ($2.71) in the Philly area.

Meanwhile, while crude settled above $70 a barrel for the first time this year, gasoline prices failed to rise overnight for the first time in 42 days, signaling a possible break for motorists as summer driving shifts into high gear.

Benchmark crude for July delivery rose $1.92 to close at $70.01 a barrel in trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange, hitting a new annual high of $70.18 during the afternoon.

On Tuesday, the government joined several banks that have revised their price expectations upward for the year.

The Energy Department's Energy Information Administration said today that it expects retail gasoline prices to hit their summer peak in July, with a monthly average near $2.70 a gallon. For the full year, the EIA now predicts an average retail price of $2.33 a gallon, up from its forecast of $2.12 a month ago.