One bright spot amid the latest economic news: Gas prices are falling nationwide, and fell below $2.99 at two gas stations yesterday, the AP reports. Not all consumers will be so lucky, but plunging oil prices have lowered pump gas by an average of 30 cents a gallon in most areas of the US. The new average is $3.61, and experts say it will keep falling over the coming weeks.
Whether it helps pick up the economy is another question. Lower gas prices could give consumers greater confidence, says one expert, but that may fade if hiring doesn’t improve and stock markets don’t pick up. “If you don’t have a job, it doesn’t matter if gasoline prices are $5 or $2 a gallon,” he said.