Aside from purchasing lottery tickets, which many Americans are continuing to do after the recent, record-breaking $1.5 billion payout was split among three winners, there is now another reason to visit the local convenience store/gas station.
With oil prices dipping below the $30 per barrel mark because of high supply and low demand, the nation is seeing some of the lowest gas prices in more than a decade.
Locally, many convenience stores and gas stations are touting prices of $1.79 and below — with a few already reaching $1.69 and below. Notionally, the average cost of regular unleaded gasoline is about $1.88 per gallon. That’s a far cry from 2008 when prices were pushing the $4 per gallon mark.
There is no reason not to show our giddiness over the plummeting of gasoline prices. For too long, fuel costs have been the bane of this country’s economy and caused many of us to curtail numerous activities. It also sparked the rise of many other costs most couldn’t avoid — like food.
While North Carolinians still have to deal with higher gasoline prices than our neighbors — like South Carolina, where prices are hovering at about $1.57 a gallon, and Virginia, where motorists are loving one of the lowest gas prices in the country at $1.29 per gallon — but the current drop here is still a welcome sight for us all.
Interestingly enough, the lower oil prices have also sparked some unusual events around the nation, including a recent “gas war” among gas stations in Houghton Lake, Mich., where at least one station was temporarily offering gasoline for 47 cents per gallon.
We don’t expect to see such craziness here in Bladen County, but we do expect to see gasoline prices continue to dip through the winter months. That can only be seen as fuel for sighs of relief — not only for motorists and those who heat their homes with oil, but for all consumers.
It is our hope that, when things begin to stabilize, there won’t be a sudden spike in the fuel costs before that plateau is reached.
While gasoline prices near $1.50 per gallon and lower are nice, they are also an extreme, just as $4 per gallon prices are. So enjoy the current dip in prices, but be prepared for the next market shift, which will surely send the prices up once again.
QUOTE OF THE DAY
“We don’t grow when things are easy. We grow when we face challenges.”