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Economy in Brief

U.S. Energy Prices Increase
by Tom Moeller  January 25, 2022

• Gasoline prices rise slightly.

• Crude oil prices surge.

• Natural gas prices strengthen again.

Retail gasoline prices rose 0.5% to $3.32 per gallon (38.9% y/y) in the week ended January 24 from $3.31 per gallon in the previous week. It remained the highest price since early-December. Haver Analytics adjusts the gasoline price series for normal seasonal variation. The seasonally adjusted price increase to $3.43 per gallon.

The price of West Texas Intermediate crude oil increased 5.6% (62.8% y/y) to $86.11 per barrel in the week of January 21. It was increased from $81.57 in the prior week and the highest price since the second week of October, 2014. Yesterday, the price eased to $83.11 per barrel. The average price of Brent crude oil rose 4.6% (57.7% y/y) to $87.68. The price fell to $83.85 per barrel yesterday.

The price of natural gas moved 1.8% higher (77.2% y/y) to $4.50/mmbtu in the week of January 21 after surging to $4.42 in the previous week. The current price remained well below the recent high of $5.87/mmbtu reached in early October 2021. Yesterday, the price increased to $4.20/mmbtu.

In the four weeks ended January 14, growth in gasoline demand weakened to 9.0% y/y, the slowest growth in three months. Growth in demand for all petroleum products improved 11.9% y/y. Crude oil input to refineries rose 7.8% y/y, the slowest growth since the second week of April 2021. Gasoline inventories rose 0.6% y/y, but crude oil inventories declined 10.6% y/y.

The supply of gasoline inventories in the week ending January 14 rose to 29.0 days, its highest level since February 2021. The supply of crude oil was little changed at a reduced 26.4 days.

These data are reported by the Energy Information Administration of 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 01/24/22 01/17/22 01/10/22 Y/Y % 2020 2019 2018
Retail Gasoline ($ per Gallon, Regular, Monday) 3.32 3.31 3.30 38.9 3.28 2.24 2.57
Light Sweet Crude Oil, WTI ($ per bbl, Previous Week's Average) 86.11 81.57 77.86 62.8 67.74 39.43 56.91
Natural Gas ($/mmbtu, LA, Previous Week's Average) 4.50 4.42 3.80 77.2 3.89 2.03 2.57
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