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    Gas Demand Drops

    Retail gasoline demand fell 2.5 percent for week ended Dec. 12.

    NEW YORK -- Even as prices at the pumps dropped more than a dime, retail gasoline demand fell 2.5 percent in the week ended Dec. 12, compared to the prior week, according to a MasterCard SpendingPulse report.

    Gasoline demand averaged 9.098 million barrels per day during that week, and was down 5.4 percent from the same week a year ago, according to the weekly report.

    The decline in consumption came even as pump prices fell 11 cents to average $1.67 a gallon, the report outlined.

    The U.S. Energy Information Administration forecasts global energy demand will drop for the first time since 1983 this year, and shrink again in 2009—led by U.S. declines.

    MasterCard estimates retail gasoline demand based on aggregate sales activity in the MasterCard payments system, coupled with estimates for all other payment forms, including cash and checks.

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