Why Lower Energy Prices Can Be A Mixed Blessing

From the most meaningful perspective to most Americans--that of their pocketbooks--the overall trend in energy costs in recent years has been a blessing. Energy prices rose just 2% last year, helping to hold the consumer price index to a 2.9% gain, its smallest in six years. On an inflation-adjusted basis, energy prices are not much higher today than they were in 1987. And real gasoline prices are lower than they were in the mid-1970s.

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