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Christmas cheer starts with low gas prices

Christmas cheer starts with low gas prices

Gas prices are tumbling down faster than some news organizations can report the trend. NBC News noted that the price per gallon nationwide had fallen to an average of $2.72 as of last week, which is the lowest it has been in four years. Now, the AAA Fuel Gauge Report is showing that the national average has dropped to just $2.505 for a gallon of gasoline.

Now the question on everyone's mind is, how long will those prices continue to plummet?

Is $2 gas just weeks away?
Some suggest the price of gasoline could drop to $2 per gallon based on current prices per barrel. The International Business Times suggested that the price of West Texas Intermediate crude is a big indicator for how much drivers will have to pay at the pump. 

"Once the price of WTI gets to about $50 you're at $2-a-gallon gasoline, in at least some locations like Texas," John R. Auers, an oil refining expert and executive vice president of Dallas-based Turner, Mason & Co., consulting engineers, told the news source.

Just recently, the price for one WTI barrel fell to $57.81 for Jan. 15 delivery. While motorists are more than happy about the savings at the gas station, industry experts are are sharing both good and bad news about the falling fuel prices. For one, IBT reported that the S&P 500's energy sector dropped over 2 percent following the downturn in oil prices last week. Others point out that reduced fuel prices also mean that the price of goods - especially plastics - will decrease as the cost of shipping decreases. The same goes for transportation expenses that are largely influenced by the cost of fuel in airplanes.

Take your savings to the store
With the holidays right around the corner, many people plan to use those fuel savings to shop, travel and more. An Opinion Outpost poll asked 2,056 respondents if the drop in gas prices affected holiday plans in some way. Some 64 percent of people answered that the trend was affecting their arrangements in some way. 

Now that fuel prices are so low, you can pack up the family for a road trip over the holidays to see the relatives or use the added cash to purchase some of the latest and greatest gifts online or at a local retail store. The inexpensive fuel may be sparking another trend, however. 

According to Forbes, big SUVs have gained a lot of popularity within the year. Mainstream and luxury model SUVs have undergone a notable uptick, according to Kelley Blue Book senior director of industry insights and Forbes auto writer Karl Brauer. The source noted that particularly in the last three months, the bigger and less fuel efficient vehicles have experiences an undeniable surge in popularity.

While some industry experts would warn against purchasing a new vehicle that uses more gas based on the low price of fuel, that hasn't stopped buyers from jumping back into SUVs.

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