February 17, 2006


Gasoline falls below $2 in some spots (James R. Healey, 2/16/06, USA TODAY)

Gasoline prices have slipped lower than $2 in a few places in a harbinger of lower prices nationwide.

The nationwide average has dropped to $2.269, down half a penny overnight, travel organization AAA said Thursday. Scattered stations already have posted prices starting with "1" rather than "2." Users of a fuel-price website Thursday reported $1.96 gasoline near Minneapolis, for instance.

Averages in a number of metropolitan areas are likely to fall to less than $2, perhaps as soon as today. Corpus Christi, Texas, averaged $2.006, and several other metro areas were just a few cents more.

Posted by Orrin Judd at February 17, 2006 8:40 AM

$1.98 to $1.99 in western KY for the past week.

Posted by: Bartman at February 17, 2006 9:46 AM

It was noted in other stories that some of the refinerines were going to have to shut down in the next few weeks to switch over from winter to summer formulations, so the price drops will either slow or stop entirely at that time (Of couse when that happens, some of the big media outlets will start taking about a new rise in consumer prices and the inflation rate because they didn't do their research on the subject in the first place).

Posted by: John at February 17, 2006 9:53 AM

$2.159 in NH yesterday.

Posted by: Genecis at February 17, 2006 9:54 AM

John you're far too kind to think that it's poorly done research that causes misinformation from the media. If only.

It's deliberate. First there's no mention of prices dropping, plunging or plummeting, then when they rise again because normal market forces, the media jump in with more fear mongering.

That's their job and they do it magnificently well. Bad news -- more and more of us are on to them. Note precipitous drops in circulation and TV news viewership.

Posted by: erp at February 17, 2006 10:39 AM

LONDON (Reuters) - Oil climbed more than a dollar on Friday to well above $59 a barrel, as traders bet on lasting price strength, driven by anxiety over Iran and the prospect of tighter gasoline supplies when the U.S. driving season begins.

Posted by: Genecis at February 17, 2006 10:43 AM

They love losing that bet, huh?

Posted by: oj at February 17, 2006 11:16 AM

i have no idea what gasoline costs.

Posted by: toe at February 17, 2006 11:58 AM

In some places, it costs an arm and a toe.

Posted by: AllenS at February 17, 2006 12:28 PM

Believe it or not, MSNBC(?) had a piece on this car the Italians are driving and actually informed the American populace watching that gas is the equivalent of $10/g in Italy.

Posted by: Sandy P at February 17, 2006 12:34 PM

I'm not all that old, so my experience buying gas doesn't go back too far, but I will never forget filling up my car sometime in 93-94 in San Antonio, TX for $0.75. Legendary, that was.

Posted by: b at February 17, 2006 12:50 PM

It was a quarter a gallon when I was growing up, living in a hole in the ground, crawling to school five miles uphill in the snow. Our dad would shoot us when we got home...

Posted by: joe shropshire at February 17, 2006 1:00 PM

Joe, I actually paid $.25 P.G. in the suburbs of Kansas City in 1970.

Posted by: Genecis at February 17, 2006 1:27 PM

$2.29 yesterday on Peachtree in Atlanta.

Posted by: Twn at February 17, 2006 2:06 PM

Still over $2 per here in eastern Iowa. Must be 'cuz most of the gas is spiked with ethanol.

My family took a month long road-trip through the western US in 1976, and at one point we had to pay the scandalous sum of 75 cents a gallon at a tourist trap gas station in Colorado. If only we'd known.....

Posted by: Chris B at February 17, 2006 2:20 PM

Ditto on the two-bit gas.

In '72 we drove a big Country Squire on a camping trip from sea to shinning sea -- 9,000 miles for under $100.00 in gas. Liked it so much, we did it again the next summer.

Posted by: erp at February 17, 2006 2:30 PM

Yes, everyone, I know that gas was dirt cheap 30+ years ago. I guess I should have written more about why that number was so amazing, because it was totally anomalous and indicates how mind-bogglingly cheap on a historical scale gas was during the early & mid 90's.

Posted by: b at February 17, 2006 2:38 PM

b. Don't be upset because you were born too late to fill up your gas tank for $5.00. What we're not telling you is that $11,000.00 per annum was a very comfortable income for a family of five. It's all relative.

Posted by: erp at February 17, 2006 4:23 PM

And thank subsidies your gas isn't priced higher.

Posted by: Genecis at February 17, 2006 4:29 PM

Gas isn't subsidized, Genecis. It's pretty heavily taxed -- 45 cents a gallon on average. At $2.10 that works out to about 27%.

Posted by: joe shropshire at February 17, 2006 4:43 PM

Ethanol is.

Posted by: Sandy P at February 17, 2006 5:51 PM

I was listening to my sister and mom talking about gas going down a few cents at one of the local stations and it just seemed so ridiculous considering all the driving they do that is completely frivolous. To me, the 7 cents they're saving a gallon doesn't compare to the several bucks per gallon they're wasting going to antique shops just to look.

Posted by: RC at February 17, 2006 6:05 PM

RC, they'd "waste" even more money if they bought stuff. Antiquing is a lot of fun, don't be a killjoy.

Posted by: erp at February 17, 2006 7:20 PM


when the U.S. driving season begins

That's the solution right there! Joe can keep his cheap gas prices, but we will just shorten the driving season.

Posted by: Peter B at February 18, 2006 5:01 AM

They're your low gas prices too, Peter.

Posted by: joe shropshire at February 18, 2006 12:21 PM

Uh oh. I didn't know there was a driving season. We're retired so we just drive any old season and we don't care how high gas prices go because we know you young 'uns will continue kicking in those big FICA bucks.

Thanks so much.

Posted by: erp at February 18, 2006 2:22 PM