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Old 02-04-2006, 11:15 AM
jasonh300 jasonh300 is offline
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: New Orleans, La.
Posts: 1,666
We had a thread about this recently.

One of the answers was that waaaaaay back when gas was like a dime a gallon, someone put it on sale at $0.099 a gallon (9.9 cents). At that time, $2.00 was a lot to pay for a tank of gas and that 1/10 of a cent you saved ended up being 2 cents off the tank, which is 1%. The 2 cents was probably enough to buy a coke or a candy bar. Not a bad savings.

Now that gas is $2.499 a gallon, you still save that 2 cents on 20 gallons which is 0.040016006403%. Totally insignificant.

If we could still save that 1% off of $50 worth of gas, it'd still be enough to buy a (canned) Coke or a candy bar.

Another possible answer: Some things are not sold by the distributor in the same unit in which we buy it.

Oil refineries may sell fuel for $XX.XX per 100 gallons. $169.90/100 gallons comes to $1.699. Of course that wouldn't explain why it's always .9 because the price could just as well be $169.50/100 gal. I guess the extra .4 would be part of the station's markup.

Also, it's rare anyone buys exactly one gallon of gas, which would leave the gas station with an extra 1/10 of a cent. But if you buy exactly 10 gallons, the station doesn't get the extra millage.

If gas is $2.499 and you prepay with $2.50, do you get 1 gallon or does it give you 1.0004 gallons?

Here's some links to other threads.

From 5/19/04

From 8/3/2000

I could swear there was a more recent thread but I can't find it through the search function.