​Falling Oil Prices Bring Relief To Consumers

Staff Reporter
Jan. 18, 2015

Falling oil prices is great for the middle class, but not if their jobs rely on the oil and gas industry. The cost at the pump has dropped by half during the past six months. But the prices are sending mixed signals on Wall Street and Texas.

Prices have fallen more than half in the past several months and that could mean less profits for some sectors in the industry. Dr. Larry Allen, professor of economics at Lamar University, believes the negative effects will affect some jobs in the oil industry more than others. But it seems to be pointing in places like Texas.

“Falling oil prices hurts the Texas economy, hurts the state of Texas revenue it reduces employment but it doesn’t lead to a wave of layoffs in the petro-chemical industry,” said Dr. Allen. He believes the hardest hit will be those who drill for oil. “We have exploration and extraction and that’s the type of thing that really benefits from oil prices boom and that’s the type of thing that’s going to suffer quite a bit,” said Dr. Allen.

Oil is also becoming cheap in other areas of the country, most states are paying below $2 per gallon. Ask any consumer at the pump about the price and they get excited. “It’s about time,” Scott Fisher, Sebastian, Fl., said. “Let’s hope it stays with this, but I doubt it.”

Right now the consumer is clearly winning at the pump, but the oil companies are losing, struggling to make ends meet and down down capital projects.

Investors say to buy stock in oil now before it rises again. If you trust past trends, the price could easily double in six months. But not all consumers are stock savy.

For now, people from all over the country are filling up, and lawn businesses across South Florida are reaping the benefits. Some are buying up extra containers to store their low-priced fuel in. That’s not a bad idea.

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