Gas prices expected to drop through new year

CINCINNATI - Holiday travel is expected to be up this season partly because of plummeting gas prices. Gas prices had risen sharply over the summer to more than $4 a gallon but since then, the cost of gasoline, home heating oil and natural gas has fallen back.

Cincinnati's average price is $3.20 per gallon while the national average sits at $3.29.

AAA estimates the national average price of gasoline will slowly drop through the end of the year and average between $3.20-3.40 a gallon by New Year's Day. Prices dropped about 50 cents per gallon on average from September through early December.

"Prices now over a dollar lower per gallon than where they were earlier this year," said Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst for GasBuddy.com.

Gas prices fell last month by the most in more than three years. AAA says consumers could have more money to spend on holiday shopping, dining and entertainment if prices drop through December as expected.

To find the cheapest gas prices in your area, go to http://www.wcpo.com/subindex/traffic/gas_prices .

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