The price of gas has hovered around the two-dollar mark for several months, a reality that has students at Northwestern both delighted and confused.
Some students who have noticed this change the most are those that live off campus. Leo Sanchez-Perry is one such commuter.
“My brother and I drive to campus every day, because we are both living off campus this semester,” Sanchez-Perry said. “Even though it’s a really short drive, going back and forth multiple times a day can really add up.”
Dylan Hengst has noticed these the benefits of lower gas prices also.
“I am from Wisconsin, so making the eight hour drive in a truck that gets about 17 mpg can be costly,” Hengst said. “The drop in gas prices has saved me a decent chunk of money during my last couple trips.”
Although prices are now lower than they’ve been since most NW students graduated high school, many drivers are still looking for ways to lower their expenses. One easy way to do this is carpooling.
“When I drove home for Christmas break, I took three more students who live in Wisconsin along with me,” Hengst said. “They all pitched in for gas, and thanks to the low prices they were actually able to cover it.”
Oil prices have plummeted over 50 percent in less than a year, from $107 per barrel in June of last year, to less than $50 per barrel currently.
This is mostly good news for the United States economy, because lower oil prices put money back in the pockets of middle- and working-class families.
Cutting these expenses will boost spending in other areas, thus creating revenue and new jobs. Both of these factors are indicators of a healthy economy.
The downside to the drop in oil prices is that U.S. oil production will dramatically slow down now that it is not as profitable. This means that U.S. based oil companies are laying off workers and scaling back on other expenses.
Fortunately, the domestic energy sector accounts for only 1.4 percent of U.S. jobs. This means that as a whole, lower gas prices are good news for the U.S.
The selling price of oil is a very complex matter, with many global factors to take into account.
If some of the current global developments remain consistent, the price of gas could stay deflated for a long time.