The National Weather Service says only 3.49 inches of rain have fallen downtown so far in 2013. That's just 26 percent of normal to date.
The current record is 4.08 inches set in both 1947 and 1953.
Forecasters say there's a chance of showers on Thursday, but rainfall is expected to be less than a quarter of an inch.
The calendar year measurement differs from the region's commonly used "water season" totals. A water season runs from July 1 through June 30 because most rain in Southern California falls from late fall through early spring.
The driest water season was 2006-2007, when downtown Los Angeles received just 3.21 inches of rain.