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Gas Prices Still Falling …

PLEASURE AT THE PUMP … By FITSNEWS  ||  When we last examined gas prices a month ago, they stood at an average of $3.18 per gallon of regular unleaded – which was down from $3.39 the previous month.  Well, the good news has gotten even better this month as the…

PLEASURE AT THE PUMP …

By FITSNEWS  ||  When we last examined gas prices a month ago, they stood at an average of $3.18 per gallon of regular unleaded – which was down from $3.39 the previous month.  Well, the good news has gotten even better this month as the average price of a gallon of regular unleaded has fallen all the way to $2.87 – more than eighty cents below its summer peak.

And more than thirty-three cents below this same time last year …

Excellent, right?  Indeed … any reduction in the cost of fuel is good.  That’s especially true in our home state of South Carolina where citizens pay a disproportionately high percentage of their modest incomes on fuel costs (second only to citizens of Mississippi, actually).

Of course we’ve noted the increased domestic production – under current policies – is unsustainable.  Which is why we enthusiastically embrace the “Drill, Baby, Drill” perspective recently espoused by Rick Manning of Americans for Limited Government.

Oh, we also embrace global competition … which is the main reason gas prices are falling (America isn’t the only country ramping up its domestic production in recent years).

But what impact will these falling prices have on the broader consumer economy?

Good question.  It’s been estimated that for each one cent drop in gas prices, the consumer economy benefits by $1.4 billion.  Of course according to U.S. Department of Transportation data, diminished demand for fuel is the result of less driving – which is a bad sign for the economy.  If current estimates hold, Americans will travel 1.7 percent fewer miles in 2014 than they did seven years ago.  Less driving means less demand for gasoline, which is why current daily usage stands at 8.82 million barrels – down from 9.3 million barrels in 2007.

So … what about the argument that lower gas prices will stimulate more retail activity (i.e. ho ho happier holiday shopping season)?

Lance Williams at Street Talk  took a comprehensive look at that question and concluded they won’t.

“While the argument that declines in energy and gasoline prices should lead to stronger consumption sounds logical, the data suggests that this is not actually the case,” he wrote. “With consumers heavily leveraged already, any increases in disposable incomes from lower gasoline prices are likely negligible in terms of their monthly spending.”

Williams also predicts that another cold winter could mean that “any savings from lower gasoline prices” would be rerouted into “higher electricity and heating oil costs.”

Bummer …

We’re still hoping for a big holiday year but if you’re banking on low gas prices to spark a long-awaited consumer renaissance, you might want to rethink that proposition.

UPDATE: Oh, for those of you keeping score at home, gas prices here in the Palmetto State are currently $2.62 per gallon – down a whopping 34 cents from last month.  And yes, that’s the lowest price in the country.

***

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31 comments

Fits Ain't No Republican November 18, 2014 at 5:31 pm

Bottom line?

Fits is really not too happy with these lower gas prices.

Means less profit for the oil companies.

And we all know how Republicans prostrate themselves before Big Oil.

Ah don’t feel too bad Fits,those boys will survive on a few Billion less.

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idcydm November 18, 2014 at 5:56 pm

One thing for sure the Feds and States are not losing money because of lower gas prices, taxes are by the gallon the only way they lose, if people drive less or the mpg is greater.

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vicupstate November 18, 2014 at 6:43 pm

By the gallon doesn’t account for inflation, which is part of the reason why the highways are in such bad shape. The cost of maintenance is affected by inflation, but the gas tax revenue stays the same regardless of the rise or fall in price per gallon.

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idcydm November 18, 2014 at 6:47 pm

Maybe if they put that revenue in a lock box????

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euwe max November 19, 2014 at 7:55 am

How about we give it to the rich and see what happens? Twice.

Republican Follies November 19, 2014 at 8:03 am

Or a tax break for the oil companies.

Of course Republicans have been telling us for YEARS that if we didn’t cut their taxes ,oil companies Wouldnt have any money to “invest” and gas prices would NEVER come down.

We didn’t cut their taxes though,but somehow in the billions they made they found a few dollars to “invest” and well gosh darn gas prices came down!

Mike at the Beach November 19, 2014 at 9:18 am

In a sealed mayonnaise jar under Al Gore’s back porch…

FastEddy23 November 18, 2014 at 7:09 pm

The oil biz is doing just fine, it’s g’ment that loses tax revenue when pump prices fall. (Big Oil has their profit margins cast in stone, g’ment taxes fuels as a percentage of the pump price. … I bought 500 COP today and will buy more tomorrow … ;-)

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idcydm November 18, 2014 at 7:56 pm

“g’ment taxes fuels as a percentage of the pump price”

Really.

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euwe max November 19, 2014 at 7:55 am

It’s all about choice.

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FastEddy23 November 19, 2014 at 11:54 am

Mostly, yes. There is the fixed taxes: the lease costs, the payola to the poli-wiogs to “allow” the drilling to proceed (ala the XL), the property taxes (a percentage of facilities “value”), the personal income taxes of all the employees … and more taxes, tithes and tributes … On top of all of that is the fed and state per gallon fuel taxes, supposedly used to build the roads (and now building “high speed” rail services) … and more and more …

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Same ol' Same ol' November 18, 2014 at 5:56 pm

The young lady was obviously pumping today without a coat.
Enjoy it while we can.

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E Norma Scok November 18, 2014 at 6:23 pm

I remember her and her puffy nips.

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euwe max November 18, 2014 at 10:20 pm

I remember you saying she had puffy nips… but I can’t remember my witty riposte!

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Same ol' Same ol' November 19, 2014 at 1:48 pm

Ha, I remember her, too, puffy nips that just melt in your mouth.
I don’t remember your remark, though, seems I suffer from crs.

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euwe max November 18, 2014 at 10:40 pm

No wonder! It was one of my lamer attempts at humor.

https://www.fitsnews.com/2014/08/19/gas-prices-ease/#comment-1549943489

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E Norma Scok November 19, 2014 at 10:39 am

Sadly, I seemed to be much wittier that day.

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vicupstate November 18, 2014 at 6:45 pm

It makes no sense whatsoever to say that the reduction in the price doesn’t benefit consumers and thereby consumer spending. Having more money left over means they have more to spend or to save. The more they save the less they pay in interest or spend at some later time. Either way it is to their benefit.

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I See Dumb Posters November 18, 2014 at 6:57 pm

Where have you been???? Food prices have gone through the roof ….. Electric rates have gone through the roof …. Clothing cost have gone through the roof, too. “More Money To Spend”, MY BACKSIDE!!!!!!

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FastEddy23 November 19, 2014 at 5:35 am

Oh Bummer

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euwe max November 19, 2014 at 8:15 am

That guy could fuck up a rock-fight! Also sounds like he needs a new roof!

Can’t he see how very EFFICIENT the market is?

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TyroneMamaCollards November 19, 2014 at 10:26 am

Clothing? Belks and Macys have sales every day of the week. They cannot give the stuff away for free.
Food? I enjoy rib eye, salmon, filet several times a week. Food prices do not mean much to me. I eat what I want to eat.
Electric? Do you go to the public service commission meetings when SCE&G or Duke wants to raise prices? or do you sit on your can watching football?
Inflation is LOW if you have not noticed. In fact I am afraid of deflation.

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FastEddy23 November 18, 2014 at 6:51 pm

Harry Reid killed the XL pipeline in the senate, today (again). Looks like January for that one (too).

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euwe max November 19, 2014 at 8:13 am

Brilliant!

We keep the threat of the pipeline over their heads, and keep gas prices down!

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Yep! November 19, 2014 at 9:11 am

“There is no such thing as “peak oil”, just cheap, hard to get oil and more expensive oil.”

THAT, is very true and an important point lost on my people.

I can’t tell you how many “teachers” I had in the 80’s, in both high school & college that “peak oil” was just around the corner. Of course, because I was a dumb shit then, I nodded my head without questioning it. I hate the fact I was too stupid in my teens & 20’s to know what I didn’t know.

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Yep! November 19, 2014 at 9:12 am

edit” “told me that “peak oil”

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euwe max November 18, 2014 at 10:18 pm

Oh HEY! I remember her!

That’s putting a new meaning on “framing the shot.”

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euwe max November 19, 2014 at 7:37 am

There turned out to be a downside to the thrill of getting a Hummer… they cost too much, and then there’s that public humiliation and painful reminder every time you take out the old nozzle and try to squeeze out a few drops. For a while there, it looked like no one wanted a Hummer any more.

Now that prices are down, those same banana peelers are back cruising the main drag from the Republican men’s club, past the Sonic, through the Hi-D-Ho, and into the industrial district, eyeing the seedy guzzler lot trash, looking for the fewest miles per gallon with the best paint job for another thrill, and finally – the last leg through the park past the popular public toilet where it all starts over again.

Won’t be long before someone comes up with a car with 10 gears complete with air horn and engine braking with huge side-tanks like a semi, but louder. You’ll have to pull into an armored refueling station to fill it up. Everyone will yell at the tops of their voice to be heard over the rumbling, honking and gears grinding…. and then, of course, wouldn’t you know it.. some smug son-of-a-bitch will pull up at a light in a Volt, a Prius, or a Volvo or something, with that stupid “you ignorant hillbilly” smirk on his face.

Should have stayed in the trees, instead of crying all the time about “the good old days,” and “taking America back.”

Watching some Simian throwback at the pump putting his children’s education in his guzzler’s throat always makes me a little sick about the wars we fund to keep the world safe for 10 mpg show boating.

What did they think would happen?

The little numbered spinning wheels at the pump probably made them think they were about to hit the jackpot or something.

After pro-pollution water-wasting Republicans started filtering their own sewage for drinking water(see? they got it all figured out!), the taste and the odor got to their sophisticated palates, so it’s 3-1 gallon bottles of spring water for $6.00 and $12 shipping if they don’t want to get any of that hippy-dippy queer-bait sunlight on their skin every time they get thirsty.

Or better yet, half a liter of purified water in 24 separate bottles for $6.99 at the Walmart freak show. Wouldn’t want to waste a chance for some serious in-your-face non-composting land fill shock value while slaking our thirst would we? How about selling it in one-ounce vials made to fit in cartridge loops in camo hunting jackets and ammo belts? Might as well make them in every caliber for that personal and authentic fuck-you look.

Too bad sunlight and air is still free – Republicans don’t want any part of that homo commune Rocky Mountain High greenie-weenie stuff unless they’re getting falling- down drunk, shooting something, fucking up nature trails with ORVs or blowing something up while they’re in it. I guess if they burn up enough shit, they can finally pay for that too. i wonder what the shipping cost on sunlight will be.

Maybe we can cook up a reason for wars to keep America safe for anti-environmentalists.

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TyroneMamaCollards November 19, 2014 at 10:18 am

I pay 2.46 at Jakes near Williamston/Pelzer.
Low gas prices spur more going out to restaurants, more Christmas spending, more travel, more everything.
Flex-fuel cars are a tremendous advantage. I have several cars including a Fiat to scoot around in. Our cars are getting better and better with fuel efficiency.
We are on the way to energy independence. Thank God.

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Manray November 19, 2014 at 11:19 am

I thought the major appeal of the Keystone pipeline was the Holy Grail of cheaper gasoline? Gas near my house is $2.49 per gallon — the cheapest price in years — so was all that talk just oil industry bullshit?

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FastEddy23 December 19, 2014 at 7:53 pm


Obama says Keystone pipeline mostly helps Canadian oil companies, not Americans
Published December 19, 2014
FoxNews.com

It would appear that the Community Activist in Chief is trying to play economics games with the price of gas, again.

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