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Economy in Brief

U.S. Energy Product Costs Weaken
by Tom Moeller  February 21, 2018

Retail gasoline prices fell to $2.56 per gallon last week (+11.1% y/y) from $2.61 per gallon. Prices reached a peak level of $2.64 two weeks ago. Haver Analytics constructs factors adjusting for the seasonal variation in gasoline pump prices. The seasonally-adjusted price fell to $2.77 per gallon from $2.84, but remained near the highest level since December 2014.

WTI crude oil prices declined sharply to $60.47 per barrel last week (+13.6% y/y) to the lowest level since the end of December. Prices improved yesterday to $61.90 per barrel. Brent crude oil prices declined to $62.85 per barrel last week, but rose to $64.68 yesterday.

Natural gas prices weakened to $2.52/mmbtu last week (-11.6% y/y) and were $2.61/mmbtu yesterday.

In the week ended February 9, gasoline demand increased 6.5% y/y, while total petroleum product demand improved 6.9% y/y. Gasoline inventories declined 3.9% y/y, while inventories of all petroleum products fell 8.9% y/y. Crude oil input to refineries improved 3.3% y/y in the last four weeks.

The energy price data are reported by the U.S. Department of Energy. The petroleum demand and inventory figures are from the Oil & Gas Journal Weekly. These data 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 02/19/18 02/12/18 02/05/18 Y/Y % 2017 2016 2015
Retail Gasoline ($ per Gallon, Regular) 2.56 2.61 2.64 11.1 2.47 2.31 2.03
Light Sweet Crude Oil, WTI ($ per bbl.) 60.47 62.01 65.22 13.6 50.87 43.22 48.90
Natural Gas ($/mmbtu, LA, WSJ) 2.52 2.72 3.25 -11.6 2.96 2.49 2.62
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