Baton Rouge, Louisiana
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Gas prices falling to record lows

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BATON ROUGE - Fuel prices could drop to pre-Katrina levels by the end of the week.

Prices at the pump fell as the trading price of a barrel of crude continued to drop. With an already large supply, the amount of crude on the market will thicken as Iran adds 500,000 barrels a day now that sanctions have been lifted.

"We has an enormous increase in production," Jim Richardson, an economist, said in an interview with WBRZ reporter Brittany Weiss Monday. The production increases mean cheaper gas at gas stations. Monday, prices were as low as $1.44 in East Baton Rouge.

"It's a good price, real good price," one driver said.

"It think it's good, compared to what it was a year ago," another driver added.

But, what is good for the consumer is bad for oil workers and the state's economy.

"Until prices come back, and stay in the $50-plus range for a significant amount of time, we're going to continue to see additional job losses," Gifford Briggs, the Vice President of the Louisiana Oil and Gas Association, said.

Each time a barrel of oil drops $1, Louisiana stands to lose $12 million in revenue.

Crude oil fell to about $28 a barrel for the first time since 2003. The Wall Street Journal reported Monday JP Morgan Chase forecast oil trading at $25 a barrel by spring. For consumers, analysts expect automobile gasoline prices to fall further, too.


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