The monthly gas-price survey by Iowa’s Department of Natural Resources confirms what you’ve noticed at the gas station — prices are high and staying that way. D-N-R fuel-price analyst Jennifer says prices across the board are higher this month, they’ve found, and Moehlman says you’re not only paying more for gasoline, deisel, natural gas, propane or heating oil, but chances are that you’ll be paying even more this winter. With crude oil prices around 55-dollars a barrel for more than a week, the high price begins with the raw material. Normally gasoline prices drop this time of year as we quit summer driving and demand eases, but she says crude oil is high adnd gasoline comes from that so its price pushes up the cost of the end product. You can blame one culprit closer than the mideast for part of the high cost — and his name is Ivan.With winter making Iowans turn on the furnace, Moehlman has heating tips including winterizing the house and checking furnace ducts to make sure they’re not blocked, don’t have holes, and aren’t losing heat on the way to far corners of the house. Insulating the ducts can improve energy-efficiency, too. Moehlman says programmable thermostats that cool the house at night and while you’re gone can offer savings, too. Analysts of the world markets say crude oil prices fell for a second day today but remain well over 50-dollars a barrel, raising concerns that high energy prices could slow hiring and other economic factors.
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