Gas prices down 25.6 cents in one week

December 2, 2018 | 3:01 am

Updated December 1, 2018 | 7:44 pm

Gas prices continue to fall at "breathtaking speed." | Graphic by Owensboro Times

Gas prices are down all across the country, including Daviess County and Owensboro. According to the USA TODAY, prices are continuing to fall at “breathtaking speed.” In the U.S., gas prices currently stand at an average $2.656 per gallon, which is down 25.6 cents in one week.

In Owensboro, gas prices are even lower, with the lowest prices ranging between $1.99 and $2.20 per gallon. At the time of this writing, the cheapest gas could be found at Fast Lane (1816 Triplett St.), Valero (1801 Triplett St.) and Shell (1211 Breckenridge St.) at $1.99 per gallon.

Low gas prices can also be found at Huck’s (300 E. Parrish Ave.), Marathon (715 W. Parrish Ave.), Valero (1428 W. 2nd St.) Super A (409 Crabtree Ave.) and Marathon (2224 Frederica St.). According to the GasBuddy website, prices at these local gas stations range between $2.02 per gallon and $2.09 per gallon.

A clerk at the Valero gas station on Triplett said they have yet to have long lines since lowering prices to $1.99 per gallon, but they have seen more traffic at their store than usual.

“There’s no line, but some people come and go, come and go,” the clerk said.

Some stores have seen a surge in increased gasoline sales since the drop in prices, including Franey’s Food Mart at 3511 Frederica St. Their unleaded gas price is currently sitting at $2.05 per gallon.

“Oh, we’ve definitely seen more customers,” said Debbie Millay, a clerk who’s worked at Franey’s for 8 years.

While Millay hasn’t noticed any long lines at the pumps, she said the crowds come in spurts, but that it’s evident residents are buying more fuel due to the decrease in price.

“I think everybody’s afraid it’s going to go back up,” Millay said.

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the average price of gas is 21.6 cents lower per gallon than where it stood a year ago.

Specialists say there are a number of reasons for the declining gas prices, including the auto industry, lower oil trade prices, transportation numbers declining by 5.6 percent in the year between August 2017 and 2018 (according to the Department of Transportation), lower demand for gasoline and the number of U.S. crude oil inventories being up as compared to last year.

As for the economy, the Federal Reserve stated in a 2018 report to Congress that their economists have found rapid growth in energy production in the United States over the past 10 years.

When gas prices are higher, the Federal Reserve said it hurts customers, but the economy benefits from the new jobs, new businesses and tax revenues that stem from drilling oil and natural gas on U.S. soil.

The Federal Reserve also said that by 2019, the U.S. could be restored as the world’s largest producer of petroleum since the 1970s. By drilling for oil domestically, more money is being spent in the U.S. than in other countries who’ve supplied oil to America over the years, which serves to stimulate the economy.

When the cost for a barrel dropped below $60, making it the lowest cost for oil this year, President Donald Trump credited Saudi Arabia for lower prices on oil, tweeting, “Thank you to Saudi Arabia, but let’s go lower!”

According to National Public Radio (NPR), economists worry that the decrease in prices might not be great for the international economy, or for growth in the U.S.

Michael Regan, Bloomberg’s senior editor, says “this drop in oil coincides with a pretty alarming decline in the stock market,” citing reports from the U.S. stock market that showed their worst Thanksgiving week since 2011.

Only time will tell if the downward trend of gas prices will continue and how it will further affect both the stock market and the economy.

December 2, 2018 | 3:01 am

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