Crude oil prices plunged again Monday, exacerbating Wall Street’s New Year’s hangover. But crude’s sell-off is expected to extend a record-breaking decline in daily gasoline prices and push 2015 pump prices to their lowest yearly average since 2009.
In its annual outlook due out Tuesday , price tracker GasBuddy.com. forecasts 2015 gas prices to average $2.64 a gallon. That’s 70 cents below 2014’s $3.34 average and nearly $1 a gallon below 2012’s all-time record of $3.60. Plummeting prices will save U.S. motorists about $97 billion overall this year, or about $750 per household, says GasBuddy.com senior analyst Patrick DeHaan.
GasBuddy.com’s forecast comes a day after benchmark West Texas Intermediate plunged 5.3% to $49.88 a barrel in intraday trading — the first drop below $50 since April 2009, before settling at $50.04. The declines pummeled already hard-hit energy stocks, propelling the Dow Jones industrial average down more than 331 points to 17,502.
Crude oil has now sunk 53% from a $107.26 peak last June, while gas prices have tumbled 102 straight days to $2.20 a gallon.
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