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Economy in Brief

U.S. Gasoline Price Accompanies Crude Oil Still Lower
by Tom Moeller  January 13, 2015

Petroleum prices can't find support. Average gasoline prices declined 7 cents in the week ended January 12 to $2.14 per gallon. Prices have fallen more than one-third during the last year and by nearly one-half since their June high of $3.70 per gallon. Haver Analytics constructs factors adjusting for the seasonal variation in pump prices. The seasonally adjusted price declined to $2.36 per gallon last week from $2.47 during the week prior.

The decline in crude oil prices regained steam, down $4.65 per barrel to an average $48.75 per barrel (-47.3% y/y) in the week ended January 9. Yesterday, prices fell further to $46.07 per barrel. These levels compare to a June peak of $107.95. The seasonally adjusted price generated by Haver Analytics declined to $53.10 per barrel last week. Brent crude oil prices fell to $48.75 per carrel last week (-47.3% y/y).

Natural gas prices held steady during the week ended January 9 at $3.02 per mmbtu but slipped to $2.90 yesterday.

The demand for all petroleum products increased 2.6% y/y in the week ended January 2 and gasoline demand rose 5.5% y/y. Inventories of crude oil and petroleum products increased 5.0% y/y, the strongest rise in five years, and gasoline inventories grew 4.5% y/y.

The energy price data are reported by the U.S. Department of Energy and petroleum demand and inventory figures can be found in Haver's WEEKLY database. The daily figures are in DAILY and greater detail on prices, demand and production, along with regional breakdowns, are in OILWKLY.

Weekly Energy Prices 01/12/15 01/05/15 12/29/14 Y/Y% 2014 2013 2012
Retail Gasoline ($ per Gallon, Regular) 2.14 2.21 2.30 -35.7 3.36 3.51 3.62
Light Sweet Crude Oil, WTI ($ per bbl., WSJ) 48.75 53.40 55.58 -47.3 93.63 97.95 94.20
Natural Gas ($/mmbtu, LA, WSJ) 3.02 3.02 2.88 -29.7 4.37 3.73 2.75
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