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Economy in Brief

U.S. Energy Prices Decline Again
by Tom Moeller  January 22, 2020

Retail gasoline prices fell to $2.54 per gallon (+12.7% y/y) in the week ended January 20 from $2.57 per gallon in the previous week. Haver Analytics adjusts prices for seasonal variation. The seasonally adjusted gasoline price eased slightly to $2.76 per gallon, but remained higher than the $2.41 low early last year.

In the week ended January 17, the West Texas Intermediate crude oil price fell to $58.28 per barrel (+12.0% y/y) from $60.83 per barrel in the previous week. It was the lowest price since early in December. Yesterday, the price was little changed at $58.34 versus a recent peak of $63.27 on January 6. The price of Brent crude oil eased to an average of $64.48 per barrel (+5.8% y/y) from $66.61 in the previous week. The price was $64.87 yesterday.

The weekly average price of natural gas fell to $2.06/mmbtu (-41.0% y/y) in the week ended January 17 and reversed the prior week's increase. Prices slipped to $1.98/mmbtu yesterday.

In the four-weeks ending January 10, gasoline demand declined 0.9% y/y, while total petroleum product demand fell 1.0% y/y. Gasoline inventories improved 1.1% y/y and inventories of all petroleum products increased 0.6% y/y. Crude oil input to refineries fell 2.5% 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 01/20/20 01/13/20 01/06/20 Y/Y % 2019 2018 2017
Retail Gasoline ($ per Gallon Regular, Monday Price, End of Period) 2.54 2.57 2.58 12.7 2.57 2.27 2.47
Light Sweet Crude Oil, WTI ($ per bbl, Previous Week's Average) 58.28 60.83 61.75 12.0 56.91 64.95 50.87
Natural Gas ($/mmbtu, LA, Previous Week's Average) 2.06 2.10 2.07 -41.0 2.57 3.18 2.99
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