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Economy in Brief

U.S. Energy Prices Improve Slightly
by Tom Moeller  April 6, 2021

• Gasoline prices reverse piece of earlier decline.

• Crude oil prices rise modestly.

• Natural gas prices edge higher.

The price of regular gasoline rose to $2.86 per gallon (48.5% y/y) in the week ended April 5 after falling to $2.85 per gallon in the previous week. The price has increased from a low of $2.11 per gallon in November of last year. Haver Analytics adjusts the gasoline price series for normal seasonal variation. The seasonally adjusted price fell to $2.81 per gallon last week from $2.84 per gallon in the previous week.

The price of West Texas Intermediate crude oil improved to an average of $60.66 per barrel (179.3% y/y) in the week ended April 2 after falling to an average of $59.98 per barrel in the previous week. The price declined to $58.65 per barrel yesterday. The average price of Brent crude oil rose $63.87 per barrel (125.2% y/y) last week from $63.02 per barrel in the previous week. The price was $62.30 per barrel yesterday.

The price of natural gas edged up to $2.55/mmbtu (57.4% y/y) in the week ended April 2 from $2.54/mmbtu in the previous week. Yesterday, the price declined to $2.43/mmbtu.

In the four weeks ended March 26, gasoline demand rose 33.5% y/y and demand for all petroleum products increased 13.8% y/y. Crude oil input to refineries edged 0.3% y/y higher. Gasoline inventories fell 6.6% y/y while crude oil inventories rose 3.2% y/y. The supply of gasoline in inventory in the week ended March 26 declined to 26.6 days, down sharply from 32.1 days during all of February.

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 are in USENERGY.

Weekly Energy Prices 04/05/21 03/29/21 03/22/21 Y/Y % 2020 2019 2018
Retail Gasoline ($ per Gallon, Regular, Monday) 2.86 2.85 2.87 48.5 2.24 2.57 2.27
Light Sweet Crude Oil, WTI ($ per bbl, Previous Week's Average) 60.66 59.98 63.22 179.3 39.43 56.91 64.95
Natural Gas ($/mmbtu, LA, Previous Week's Average) 2.55 2.54 2.53 57.4 2.03 2.57 3.18
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