CHICAGO (CBS) — The price of a gallon of gas in the Chicago area dropped nearly 25 cents in November to an average of $3.52, the lowest since January, though 4 cents higher than a year ago, the AAA reports.

AAA predicts gas prices will slowly drop through the end of the year and average between $3.20-$3.40 a gallon nationally by New Year’s Day.

As of Wednesday morning, the average price of a gallon of regular unleaded gas in the city of Chicago was $3.781, down from $3.813 a month ago, but higher than the $3.662 of a year ago.

Outside the city in Illinois, the average price of that same gallon on Wednesday morning was $3.59, unchanged from a month ago and up 15 cents from a year ago, according to AAA.

In northern Indiana, gas prices averaged $3.43 in November, down 16 cents from October but up 10 cents from November 2011, according to AAA. For both Illinois and Indiana, it was the lowest monthly average since January 2012.

Other monthly averages across the region include:

— In Cook County, self-serve regular averages $3.71, down 25 cents from last month and 8 cents higher than last year.

— In DuPage County, gasoline averages $3.57, a 22-cent decrease from October and up 4 cents from last year.

— In Lake County, Ill., self-serve regular averages $3.54 per gallon, 23 cents lower than last month and up 7 cents from this time last year.

— In Lake County, Ind., gasoline averages $3.43, a 16-cent decrease from October and a 9-cent increase from a year ago.

(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2012. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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