At a time when each day seems to bring more dire news regarding the economy, Americans have one silver lining: the price at the pump is going down. According to energy experts, gas prices should fall anywhere from 30 to 50 cents per gallon over the next several weeks.

Crude oil for September delivery dropped to $81.03 a barrel in New York futures trading, but later closed at $85.72 a barrel. Earlier in the week, oil was as low as $79.30 a barrel.

In California, gas prices dropped from $3.81 to $3.76 in just a week, according to the AAA Fuel Gauge Report. Nationally, gas prices stand at $3.62, down from $3.70 a week earlier.

Patrick DeHaan, senior energy analyst for, observes, “If oil remains low, the national average for gasoline will fall to $3.25 … in the next two to three weeks as retailers slowly lower their prices to reflect their drop in cost.