ST. LOUIS — Oil prices hit a record low Monday afternoon, with oil futures plunging into negative territory.
The cost to have a barrel of U.S. crude delivered in May plummeted to negative $37.63. It was at roughly $60 at the start of the year.
The coronavirus pandemic is affecting the demand and social distancing has put a halt on travel.
Because of those oil prices, gas prices may also continue to see a dip.
"Given how volatile the market is at the moment, it is too soon to know how gasoline prices will ultimately be impacted," said Devin Gladden, manager of federal affairs for AAA. "For the foreseeable future, pump prices are expected to decline, as they have alongside decreasing crude oil prices."
Matt Hart, the executive director of the Illinois Trucking Association, said this can be a plus for drivers who are constantly on the road, like truckers.
"When fuel goes down, that can make it cheaper for trucks to drive," he said.
But for other trucking companies? Not so much.
"The price of oil also affects a lot of trucking companies who haul petroleum products," he explained.
"Low oil prices are generally not good for the economy. There’s a lot of products, such as plastics, soaps, a lot of things that are all tied back to oil and any time the oil markets go down that can have an impact on the overall economy," Hart went on to say.
But just like it's gone down, oil prices can drive back up.
"As we move products, we’re going to need more diesel fuel and as the general public slowly goes back to work, we’re going to need more gasoline. We could see this thing swing hard the other way as well," Hart said.
If you'd like to see local gas prices, current and historic, they are available here on AAA's website.
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