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Economy in Brief

U.S. Energy Prices Strengthen Further
by Tom Moeller  March 15, 2022

• Gasoline prices surge again.

• Crude oil prices approach record high, then retreat.

• Natural gas prices rebound.

Retail gasoline prices increased to a record $4.32 per gallon (51.2% y/y) in the week ended March 14 from $4.10 in the previous week. Haver Analytics adjusts the gasoline price series for normal seasonal variation. The seasonally adjusted price strengthened to $4.26 per gallon from $4.07 in the prior week.

The price of West Texas Intermediate crude oil surged to $113.39 per barrel (74.4% y/y) in the week of March 11 from $106.77 in the prior week. Yesterday, the price weakened to $103.01 per barrel. The average price of Brent crude oil increased to $122.29 per barrel (75.4% y/y) from $114.43 in the prior week. The price fell to $110.39 per barrel yesterday.

The price of natural gas rebounded to $4.71/mmbtu (77.7% y/y) in the week of March 11 after falling to $4.57 in the previous week. Prices have fallen from a high of of $5.78/mmbtu in the third week of February 2022. Yesterday, the price fell to $4.59/mmbtu.

In the four weeks ended March 4, gasoline demand rose 7.5% y/y, down from 17.5% y/y late in December. Growth in demand for all petroleum products increased 12.3% y/y. Growth in crude oil input to refineries rose a strengthened 23.7% y/y, after 13.1% y/y growth early in November. Gasoline inventories rose 5.6% y/y but crude oil inventories declined 12.9% y/y.

The supply of gasoline inventories in the week ending March 4 held steady at 28.0 days. The supply of crude oil eased to 27.0 days and that remained down from 41.8 days early in March of last year.

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 03/14/22 03/07/22 02/28/22 Y/Y % 2021 2020 2019
Retail Gasoline ($ per Gallon, Regular, Monday) 4.32 4.10 3.61 51.2 3.28 2.24 2.57
Light Sweet Crude Oil, WTI ($ per bbl, Previous Week's Average) 113.39 106.77 92.18 74.4 67.74 39.43 56.91
Natural Gas ($/mmbtu, LA, Previous Week's Average) 4.71 4.57 4.62 77.7 3.89 2.03 2.57
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