Gas prices fall below $3 in Centre County

Centre Daily Times

Barry Rowland said he wishes gas prices would plummet, but he’ll settle for less than $3 a gallon.

Rowland, of Bellefonte, pumped gas Friday at Lykens Market and said low prices would allow him to spend more for Christmas.

“We have two cars and two kids, and we do a lot of running around,” Rowland said. “This puts the money back in our pocketbook for the Christmas season, so this really helps a lot. I can only wish it was a whole dollar less, because then it’d really be a huge help.”

At Lykens Market in Spring Township, the cash price for gas has dropped to $2.94 a gallon and the credit price has dropped to $2.99 in the past week.

The Exxon station at South Atherton and South Allen streets in State College was charging $2.99 for cash purchases and $3.03 with a credit card Friday.

Local gas prices are following a national trend.

The national average for gas has dropped from $3.27 to $2.94 in the past month, and Pennsylvania gas prices have dropped from $3.38 to $3.07 in the same period.

AAA spokesman Michael Green said gas prices are at their lowest in four years.

“Gas prices are always relatively low at this time of year, because people drive a little less, but this year things are much different as crude oil prices have dropped a lot,” Green said. “What we have seen is that global supply of crude oil is abundant and demand is not as strong as it had been predicted to be.”

The oil industry’s overestimation for demand this year has had international consequences that have trickled down to local gas pumps.

“If you look at Saudi Arabia, the country is a large producer of crude oil, and they decided they could accept lower prices for crude oil, which has rattled the market,” Green said. “That’s why we’ve seen prices drop.”