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Economy in Brief

U.S. Energy Prices Mixed in Latest Week
by Sandy Batten  January 14, 2020

Retail gasoline prices inched down to $2.57 per gallon (14.4% y/y) in the week ended January 13 from $2.58 per gallon in the previous week. Last week's price equaled the average for all of 2019. Typically, gasoline prices weaken this time of year. Haver Analytics adjusts prices for seasonal variation. The seasonally adjusted gasoline price was unchanged from the previous week at $2.77 per gallon, the highest price since late October 2018.

In the week ended January 10, the West Texas Intermediate crude oil price fell to $60.84 per barrel (+19.6% y/y) from to $61.75 per barrel the previous week as concerns have ebbed that tension between the U.S. and Iran would escalate. Yesterday, the price fell to $58.08 versus a recent peak of $63.27 on January 6. The price of Brent crude oil eased to an average of $66.61 per barrel (+11.1% y/y) from $66.68 in the previous week. It fell to $64.17 yesterday.

The weekly average price of natural gas rose to $2.09/mmbtu (-27.7% y/y) in the week ended January 10 from an average of $2.07/mmbtu in the previous week. This was the second consecutive weekly increase and the third weekly increase in the past four weeks. Prices slipped to $2.03/mmbtu yesterday.

In the four-weeks ending January 3, gasoline demand declined 0.4% y/y, its first annual decline since late September 2019. but total petroleum product demand rose 0.6% y/y. Gasoline inventories were up 1.4% y/y and inventories of all petroleum products increased 0.6% y/y. Crude oil input to refineries fell 3.4% y/y in the past four weeks.

These data are reported by the U.S. Department of Energy. The price data can be found in Haver's WEEKLY and DAILY databases. Greater detail on prices, as well as the demand, production and inventory data, along with regional breakdowns, are in OILWKLY.

Weekly Energy Prices 01/13/20 01/06/20 12/30/19 Y/Y % 2019 2018 2017
Retail Gasoline ($ per Gallon Regular, Monday Price, End of Period) 2.57 2.58 2.57 14.4 2.57 2.27 2.47
Light Sweet Crude Oil, WTI ($ per bbl, Previous Week's Average) 60.84 61.75 61.28 19.6 56.91 64.95 50.87
Natural Gas ($/mmbtu, LA, Previous Week's Average) 2.09 2.07 2.03 -27.7 2.57 3.18 2.99
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