It’s been a while since gas has been this cheap locally

By Gary Scott on November 25, 2015 at 1:04pm

Motorists in Jacksonville are partying like it’s 2009 with the current slide in gas prices.

As of Wednesday morning, the low price for a gallon of regular unleaded gas is $1.71. According to our records, the last time prices were this low was January 2nd, 2009, when we recorded prices at $1.63 per gallon.

Jacksonville saw prices below two dollars for a five-month period extending in to the spring of 2010 before prices went back up to the late-2000s-recession-level norms. Prior to that, prices haven’t been this cheap locally since late 2004.

Patrick DeHaan, of GasBuddy.com, fills us in on how people are spending less to “fill her up.”

“I think a lot of what has brought us here is ample U.S. oil inventories. They remain 100 million barrels higher than just one year ago, as well as refiners that are returning from seasonal maintenance, and now they’re boosting production, boosting refining of the cheap crude oil, and that’s translating into more supply of gasoline, which is weighing on prices, as well as seasonal demand decreases that we see every year into the cooler months. That’s actively playing a role as well,” he explains.

DeHaan believes low prices will stick around for at least another month to two months.

“I think a lot of how low ultimately prices will go is going to be contingent on whether or not crude oil prices continue to plummet to multi-year lows. There’s certainly a good possibility that we haven’t seen the lowest prices yet, but it is a little difficult. There are certainly a lot of moving factors going on across the globe today,” says Dehaan.

“Talking about things like ISIS, the Saudis [recently] made comments about oil production, and that got the market going a little bit. It’s safe to say, though, that with oil inventories in this country still very, very high, that there’s going to be a struggle for gas prices to go up much this winter,” he adds.

According to the most recent Daily Fuel Gauge Report from AAA, Illinois is currently averaging just $1.99 per gallon. That’s nearly 90 cents less than what prices were a year ago. The national average for a gallon of regular unleaded is just $2.05.