Gas prices have dropped dramatically since the summer, but are those lower prices here to stay? On Wednesday we found prices as low as $1.83 a gallon. This summer drivers were paying more than double that for one gallon of unleaded. For businesses that rely on gas, many are enjoying the relief.
"This has been the worse year I have had all the 20 years that I've been driving," said Rudy Hernandez. Rudy Hernandez is a truck driver for Hart Moving and Storage and those were his thoughts about gas prices this summer, when he was paying $1000 for a tank of gas. Now that his tank can be filled for $400, his attitude has changed. "It's wonderful, I mean it's still not where we want it, but it works we can deal with this other than where it was," said Hernandez.
Hart Moving and Storage's rates reflect what the current gas prices are and since they have dramatically dropped, their customers have also noticed a difference. "Probably about a 7 percent difference from a fuel charge this summer compared to what it is right now so it's several hundred dollars difference in savings from the summer to what it is right now," said Hart Moving and Storage Sales and Office Manager Linda Cline.
John Slyker is an Independent Contractor for Fed Ex, so he is responsible for paying for his own fuel. The high prices a few months ago really affected his earnings. "It interrupted our family income quite a bit and made it harder to pay bills and harder to afford things that we would normally afford. We had to cut back," said Slyker.
Now that prices have literally been cut in half, he is noticing the savings. "Hopefully this will follow through January through the peak of Christmas, so we can deliver more packages and have to spend less on fuel," said Slyker.
So why are prices so low, and why now? "The simplest thing is the economy is starting to weaken The U.S. is seeing sales of everything collapse, job layoffs, with that there is less demand for energy," said Texas Tech Professor of Finance Scott Hein.
So despite the economy woes right now, it is a big positive for consumers who rely on fuel to get their jobs done. Professor Hein predicts the low prices will stick around for at least the next six months.
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