A Matter of Cents

As long as the nation's economy stays in dire straits, savings on fuel and food will remain a critical rallying point for supermarket chains in 2009. Despite an 11-cent jump in the second week of January of the national average retail price to $1.78 a gallon for regular gasoline, food retailers can expect relatively low gas prices this year compared to last year's price escalation to over $4 a gallon.

As long as the nation's economy stays in dire straits, savings on fuel and food will remain a critical rallying point for supermarket chains in 2009.

Despite an 11-cent jump in the second week of January of the national average retail price to $1.78 a gallon for regular gasoline, food retailers can expect relatively low gas prices this year compared to last year's price escalation to over $4 a gallon.

The Energy Information Administration's short-term energy outlook as of Jan.

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