For the first time this year, the state average gas price in Montana has taken a week-on-week drop. Petroleum Analyst Patrick DeHaan says falling prices usually begin right after the first of the year.

"Average gas prices in Montana dropped about 1.3 cents per gallon falling from about $2.61 to about $2.59 and-a-half cents, DeHaan said. "It is unusual that it has taken us till early February to see the first week-over-week decrease in gas prices, that is fairly rare."

DeHaan says the 1,000 point swings in the stock market likely helped price fall, based on a comparative analysis of the Dow Jones and oil prices.

"Whenever the Dow Jones moved up or down by triple digits, oil prices followed more than two-thirds of the time. It's probably because oil, supply and demand have a lot to do with the economy. A strong economy sees robust demand for crude oil and a weak economy sees much less demand for crude oil."

DeHaan says he expects to see prices continue to dip for the next few weeks, on top of shake-ups at the stock market a government report last week shows increasing crude oil inventories.

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