Haver Analytics
Haver Analytics
| May 31 2023

U.S. Gasoline & Crude Oil Prices Edge Higher in Latest Week

  • Gasoline prices rise to four-week high.
  • Natural gas prices fall.
  • Petroleum demand moves higher, especially for crude oil and gasoline.

Retail gasoline prices increased to $3.68 per gallon (-22.1% y/y) last week after three weeks at roughly $3.65 per gallon. Prices remained above the $3.20 low in the last week of December, but they were below the high of $5.11 per gallon in the second week of June 2022. The retail price of diesel fuel fell to $3.86 per gallon (-30.4% y/y), down from $3.88 the week before and well below the peak of $5.81 on June 20, 2022.

The price of West Texas Intermediate crude oil price rose to $72.70 per barrel (-35.3% y/y) in the week ended May 26 from $71.64 per barrel in the prior week. These remained below a recent high of $81.87 in the second week of April and from $120.46 per barrel the week of June 10, 2022. Yesterday the price was $69.46 per barrel. Brent crude oil prices rose to $76.48 (-35.0% y/y) from $75.75 in the prior week, well below the $127.40 peak in mid-June 2022. Yesterday, the price was $73.38 per barrel.

The price of natural gas fell to $2.18/mmbtu (-75.2% y/y) in the week ended May 26 from $2.29 in the previous week. Prices have fallen from their recent high of $6.78/mmbtu in the third week of December and from $9.56/mmbtu in the last week of August of 2022. Yesterday, the price was $2.11/mmbtu.

In the four weeks ended May 19, gasoline demand rose 2.5% from a year ago after increasing 2.9% in the prior week. Demand for all petroleum products rose 2.8% in the latest four weeks, up from 2.0% in the week prior. Crude oil input to refineries rose 0.3% from a year ago.

Gasoline inventories were down 1.6% y/y in the week of May 19. Crude oil inventories fell 14.6% from a year ago. Inventories of distillate fuel oil eased 1.2% y/y and residual fuel oil inventories rose 21.1% y/y.

Measured in days’ supply, gasoline inventories in the week ended May 19 eased to 23.9 days from 24.0 days in the previous week. It was the lowest level since the second week of November. The supply of crude oil fell to 28.7 days, still above its low of 25.3 days at the end of June 2022.

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 database.

  • Prior to joining Haver Analytics in 2000, Mr. Moeller worked as the Economist at Chancellor Capital Management from 1985 to 1999. There, he developed comprehensive economic forecasts and interpreted economic data for equity and fixed income portfolio managers. Also at Chancellor, Mr. Moeller worked as an equity analyst and was responsible for researching and rating companies in the economically sensitive automobile and housing industries for investment in Chancellor’s equity portfolio.   Prior to joining Chancellor, Mr. Moeller was an Economist at Citibank from 1979 to 1984.   He also analyzed pricing behavior in the metals industry for the Council on Wage and Price Stability in Washington, D.C.   In 1999, Mr. Moeller received the award for most accurate forecast from the Forecasters' Club of New York. From 1990 to 1992 he was President of the New York Association for Business Economists.   Mr. Moeller earned an M.B.A. in Finance from Fordham University, where he graduated in 1987. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from George Washington University.

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