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Matt Murray, director of UT’s Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy, was recently featured in The Bakken Magazine.

According to Murray, low gasoline prices are helping America’s economy avoid some of the downturns experienced in other parts of the world. The low prices have freed up a large amount of purchasing power for American consumers that’s being pumped back into the economy. He said political instability in the Middle East—such as the animosity between Saudi Arabia and Iran—could quickly change the world oil supply situation, especially in the Persian Gulf where shipping through the Straits of Hormuz can be blocked.