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Economy in Brief

U.S. Gasoline, Crude Oil and Natural Gas Prices Decline
by Tom Moeller  July 8, 2014

The price for a gallon of regular gasoline edged two cents lower to $3.68 last week (+5.3% y/y). Prices remained lower than the $3.78 per gallon peak reached in February of last year. To account for seasonal volatility, Haver Analytics constructs factors for adjustment of pump prices. The adjusted cost of gasoline fell three cents to $3.62 per gallon and reversed half of the prior week's gain.

The cost of WTI crude oil declined last week to $105.17 per barrel (+5.1% y/y), the lowest level in four weeks. The seasonally adjusted price of $105.44 per barrel, generated by Haver Analytics, remained up sharply from $92.19 in early-May. Yesterday, prices fell to $103.53. Brent crude oil prices declined last week to $109.97 per barrel (+4.5% y/y) and yesterday were $108.78.

Natural gas prices fell last week to $4.38 per mmbtu (+23.8% y/y), the lowest level since early-January. Prices fell further to $4.25 yesterday.

The demand for all petroleum products declined 1.2% last week versus last year. Gasoline demand edged 0.5% higher y/y. Residual fuel oil needs, used for heating, was unchanged y/y while distillate demand fell 8.0% y/y. Inventories of crude oil and petroleum products were off 0.9% y/y and gasoline inventories fell 4.4% 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 petroleum demand and inventory figures are in OILWKLY.

Weekly Energy Prices 07/07/14 06/30/14 06/23/14 Y/Y% 2013 2012 2011
Retail Gasoline ($ per Gallon, Regular) 3.68 3.70 3.70 5.3 3.51 3.62 3.52
Light Sweet Crude Oil, WTI ($ per bbl., WSJ) 105.17 106.69 107.23 5.1 97.95 94.20 95.14
Natural Gas ($/mmbtu, LA, WSJ) 4.38 4.49 4.64 23.8 3.73 2.75 3.99
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