Economic Problems – Less Pain at the Pump, More Pain for you Everywhere Else

The price of oil fell sharply today, thanks to the collapse of investment house Lehman Brothers, and the growing concern that the United States is only in the beginning stages of a prolonged economic downturn.

After falling to as low as $94.13 per barrel, the price of oil closed the trading day at $95.71, which was down $5.47 from Friday’s close.  Today’s closing price represents oil’s lowest price since back in February, and means the value of oil has fallen nearly 35% since hitting a record high of over $147 back in mid-July.

Despite today’s drop in the price of oil, gasoline prices continued to rise across the country thanks to damage caused by Hurricane Ike.  While refinery capacity is slowly coming back up, at the height of the shut downs and evacuations, nearly 25% of the United States’ fuel refinery capacity was out of commission, causing gas prices to climb significantly higher for the first time in over two months.


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