Will the decline in energy prices boost economic growth?


The United States is now the world’s largest combined producer of oil and gas, as technological innovation has helped to dramatically boost U.S. production in the past decade. But falling energy prices between June 2014 and this past March year have taken the steam out of the energy sector, which had been creating high-paying jobs during an otherwise anemic period of economic growth. Energy companies have closed down drilling rigs and cut thousands of jobs. Production has not decreased, however, because companies are finding ways to make remaining rigs more efficient. And falling oil and gas prices are good news for energy users, such as steel mills, airlines and consumers. Nevertheless, it appears the consumers so far are using this energy dividend to pay off debt and to save rather than to increase spending.

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