$1 Gas Could Soon Be Reality in Some US States

Not you, California
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 9, 2016 6:01 PM CST
$1 Gas Could Soon Be Reality in Some US States
Experts say gas prices could fall below $1 per gallon in some parts of the US.   (AP Photo/Kevin Liles)

You're not imagining things: Gas prices could soon fall as low as $1 per gallon at some US gas stations, USA Today reports. Some Midwest states—Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois, Minnesota, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Indiana, Ohio, and Kansas—are already seeing the lowest prices in 12 years. And one in four US gas stations is currently selling gas for $1.50 per gallon or less, according to Time. “Incredible as it sounds, we wouldn’t be shocked to see a few stations in these states as low as 99 cents a gallon,” says one expert. As of Tuesday afternoon, the nationwide average was $1.72 per gallon. That's approximately 7 cents less than last week, 26 cents less than last month, and 46 cents less than last year. It's the lowest average price the US has seen in six years.

The low prices—caused by a combination of falling demand and increasing production in the US and Middle East—are good news for consumers but bad news for oil companies. Oil prices hit 13-year lows last month, and the stocks of companies like BP and Exxon Mobil were down Tuesday. But not everyone is enjoying the savings. CNN reports the average price of gas in California is around $2.50 per gallon. That's due to both a larger-than-average gas tax and cleaner-than-average gasoline. California's requirement for gasoline that creates fewer emissions keeps prices higher but has made a huge impact on the state's air quality. One expert warns the rest of the country better enjoy low gas prices while it can. Refineries not turning a profit at these prices may close down for maintenance, sending gas supplies down and prices up. (Read more gas prices stories.)

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