Are gas prices about to take off?
Prices at the pump have been dropping for months. Industry analysts are trying to gauge future movement, but say the 'fiscal cliff' could be a determining factor.
Has the easing of prices at the pump been a final holiday present for consumers, or just part of the annual cycle of supply and demand?
Gas prices have been dropping for months. Several cities even reported unleaded gas dipping below $3 per gallon over the holidays, but in recent days the price of gas has been creeping up. The national average for a gallon of unleaded was $3.28 Friday, up from $3.26 Thursday and $3.23 a week ago, according to AAA.
AAA singles out several factors for the decrease in prices this fall and winter: larger gas inventories, lower crude oil prices, less demand for gas during the winter months as well as a switchover to less-expensive winter blends of gasoline. The ongoing economic downturn is also having people think twice about how often they find themselves at the pump.
But prices are due to bottom out sooner or later. And now, with crude oil prices firming and continued political and economic uncertainty, the market is apparently at a crossroads.
"Whether gas prices continue to rise or again turn lower will be impacted by action -- or inaction -- in Washington surrounding the looming 'fiscal cliff,'" said AAA’s Avery Ash in the Association's latest Fuel Gauge Report Overview.
"If a deal is reached before the end-of-year deadline it will likely be seen as positive for the U.S. economy, which could send crude prices and gas prices higher. If a deal is not reached, markets are likely to slump and gas prices could go even lower."
But other observers believe the trend is for gas prices to rebound as they usually do in the new year.
"It's happened six out of the last seven years: The national average has risen between Christmas Day and Jan. 15, and this year there's no reason to believe now that this won't happen again," says petroleum analyst Patrick DeHann in his GasBuddy.com blog.
And you can also throw into that mix new projections by the U.S. Energy Information Administration for 2013 and beyond.
The EIA is expecting greater domestic energy production, particularly of crude oil, to continue -- with overall gas consumption to be lower next year. The a.gency says the introduction of stricter fuel economy standards in new vehicles, along with the increased use of natural gas in heavy-duty vehicles, should also have a lasting impact on gas and other energy sources.
These changes, said EIA Administrator Adam Sieminski in a press release, show how "evolving consumer preferences, improved technology, and economic changes are pushing the nation toward more domestic energy production, greater vehicle efficiency, greater use of clean energy and reduced energy imports."
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go ahead raise the pries of Gas as hi as you want to Big Oil company's .You are just going to raise it any way, so let just get it out of the way an go as high as you want to. when it gets to the point i can no longer pay for the gas i will just push my car off the cliff an start walking or ride a bicycle
When i started Driving Gas was 0.99 cents a Gallon now its $3.65 a gallon i have seen it as hi as $5.00 + a galleon so why should i give a #^(_^@&! how much Gas is. it all about making the rich man richer an the pore man poorer all this if for is to #%&*@ nothing changes no one will do a thing to stop this you got what you want i woke up to day an guess what I'm pore nothing you won how much Blood do you want for Gas now this is all i have left
High energy prices are the very thing that is a drag on our economy. I believe we should work towards increased oil and gasoline production here in the United States so that prices would be forced to go DOWN, not up. Look, the oil industry was able to make plenty of profits when we were paying around a dollar per gallon for gas. Increased natural gas production here in the U.S. helped bring natural gas prices down. Increased oil production in the U.S. would most likely do the same. This would be a big win for consumers, who would then have more disposable income to spend on other things, which would grow the broader economy.
Saudi Arabia stated they needed $55.00 per barrel to be profitable and continue supplies. It's those IDIOT TRADERS that have driven the prices up! Everything else is just mumbo jumbo hogwash!!
Our government wants to talk fiscal cliff, yet they allow the traders to take money out of the pockets of working Americans.
It is time to grow a set America, throw EVERY One of those bums out of their nice comfy political office and make them participate in Social Security and abolish their cushy pensions.
It is high time the American people becomes the focus.
His wife buys 900 dollar party dreses and we go without food or gas, they have their
heads up their asses and don't care about the american people. Hope he doesn't get pecker tracks on his clothes from Joe Biden
our president doesn't care what we have to pay for gas in our cars just to get groceries, because in the past four years he hasn't had to pay out a penny for gasoline. he's off the hoook and we're ****ed !!!!
hOW CAN YOU MAKE 100 comments on the cost of gas...??
I thought it has been down for a few weeks ??
Probably due to go up...
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A basic income policy can actually ensure a decent standard of living for everyone.
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