Not long ago, whispers abounded regarding the possibility of $5 a gallon gasoline.
Now, the conversation has changed to pondering the odds of $3 a gallon gasoline--or lower.
"The market suggests gas will go below $3 a gallon probably around Halloween or Election Day," Tom Kloza, chief oil analyst at the Oil Price Information Service, said on "CBS This Morning."
He acknowledged the timing--prices plummeting just as Americans are heading to the voting booths to decide whether or not President Obama will keep his job--would have conspiracy theorists' heads spinning.
"Well, they made sure that gas prices would be going just before the election," Kloza imagined the more skeptical saying, then dismissed the notion.
"If only we had that much power!"
Kloza explained that the price reduction was just part of a natural market cycle, deriving in part by dramatically decreasing crude oil prices both globally and domestically, higher crude production in North America, and the natural tendency for demand to decrease after Labor Day.
"Consider that we paid $2.70 or so in 2010, so we've seen this before," Kloza said.
Tepid consumer demand has already played a role in free-falling gas prices over the last 11 weeks, following skyrocketing prices for the first part of 2012. The current national average, $3.45 a gallon, is 50 cents lower than it was in April.
Colorado boasted some of the lowest gas prices in the country during the months where the national average hovered near $4 a gallon, but the tables have turned as prices elsewhere have fallen. Prices are falling in Colorado, but at a much more sluggish rate. According to gasbuddy.com, Colorado currently has the ninth highest prices in the country, with a state average of $3.65 a gallon.
The country's lowest gas prices can be found in the South, where South Carolina is the first state to drop below $3 a gallon, with a state average of $2.99. Mississippi and Alabama follow at $3.06 and $3.09 respectively; Tennessee and Louisiana round out the top five.