The past few weeks I have been on the road a lot. I drove the family to San Antonio for a short vacation. Then I was off the following week to Atlanta to take my son back to school. I figured the fuel costs of driving the width and breadth of the Central Time Zone would suck my savings down to the bottom of the barrel. I was actually pleasantly surprised when I stopped for fill-ups in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia.

The thing about lower fuel prices is we don't really notice them as much as higher prices. Right now the average price for a gallon of gas in Louisiana is $3.23 according to the American Automobile Association. The lowest prices for regular unleaded that we found in the Lafayette area was $3.05 at several places. There were even more stations offering the same fuel for $3.08. Lets compare that to one month ago, the average price for fuel in Louisiana was $3.23. If you want to feel even better a year ago we were paying $3.40 on average.

The reason for the lower fuel prices are a combination of things. The price of crude is down a little and believe it or not producers and refiners are actually passing along some of the savings to you. We are also driving more fuel efficient vehicles now. That means the demand for gas is a little less than it once was. We also don't have major conflicts in the major oil producing areas of the world. This also helps to stabilize the production and price of petroleum.

In about a month refineries will switch their process and return to making the less expensive winter blend gasoline they are required to do. In the meantime you and I can continue to reap the benefits of lower fuel prices on the more expensive summer blend. The current price forecast calls for gas prices to remain at least steady for the next month if not go lower. Of course that will all go out the window if there is a hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico or war breaks out in the Middle East.