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Economy in Brief

U.S. Energy Prices Move Up
by Tom Moeller  September 4, 2013

The price for a gallon of regular gasoline rose six cents last week to $3.61 last week (-6.1% y/y). Prices remained down, however, from the $3.78 per gallon peak reached late in February. Haver Analytics constructs seasonal factors to account for seasonal volatility. The adjusted price rose four cents w/w to $3.48 per gallon and remained below the February peak of $3.94.

Light sweet crude oil prices rose to $108.41 per barrel (13.2% y/y), the highest level since April 2011. Yesterday, prices edged up to $108.54. Prices have jumped from the June 2012 low of $80.29. Brent crude oil prices also rose last week to $115.36 per barrel (2.0% y/y) yet they remained down from the February high of $118.09.

Natural gas prices ticked higher to $3.55 per mmbtu (30.3% y/y) and were $3.66 yesterday, down from the April peak of $4.26.

The demand for gasoline rose 1.0% y/y last week. Residual fuel oil needs, used for heating, fell 20.6% y/y but distillate demand increased 3.1% y/y. Gasoline inventories increased 8.2% y/y.

The energy price data are reported by the U.S. Department of Energy and can be found in Haver's WEEKLY database. The daily figures are in DAILY and the gasoline demand figures are in OILWKLY.

Weekly Energy Prices 09/03/13 08/26/13 08/19/13 Y/Y% 2012 2011 2010
Retail Gasoline ($ per Gallon, Regular) 3.61 3.55 3.55 -6.1 3.62 3.52 2.78
Light Sweet Crude Oil, WTI ($ per bbl.) 108.31 105.47 106.97 13.2 94.20 95.14 79.51
Natural Gas ($/mmbtu, LA) 3.55 3.50 3.35 30.3 2.75 3.99 4.00
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