Allowing consumers to spend money elsewhere

Allowing consumers to spend money elsewhere

Falling gasoline prices have always been good for the economy, allowing consumers to spend money elsewhere instead of on refueling their vehicles.

But this time there are losers as oil prices fall – businesses and workers involved in the domestic energy boom that has led to unprecedented oil and gas production in the middle United States.

"If the wheels come off, the energy-producing economies are going to suffer," Ken Medlock, a senior director at Rice University's Center for Energy Studies, told the Wall Street Journal.

Prices for gasoline are below $3 a gallon and as low as $2.67 at some stations in Columbus.

That's good for drivers, but bad for states like Texas and especially North Dakota, which has the lowest unemployment rate in the country but an economy that's more dependent on oil production than Texas.

Falling oil prices could be bad for oil-rich states because getting oil from shale is expensive. If the price for oil continues falling, the U.S. is likely to pull back. It's cheaper to get oil elsewhere.

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