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Economy in Brief

U.S. Gasoline & Crude Oil Prices Rise
by Tom Moeller  November 7, 2017

Recently improved economic growth has given strength to petroleum prices. Retail gasoline prices rose seven cents last week to $2.56 per gallon (14.7% y/y). Haver Analytics constructs factors adjusting for the seasonal variation in gasoline pump prices. The seasonally adjusted gasoline pump price jumped nine cents  to $2.65 per gallon, the highest level since January.

WTI crude oil prices rose to $54.59 per barrel last week (20.0% y/y) from $52.59 per barrel a week earlier. Prices strengthened to $57.35 per barrel yesterday. The two month futures price rose to $57.57 per barrel. Brent crude oil prices increased to $61.04 per barrel last week and were $64.27 per barrel yesterday.

Natural gas prices declined last week to $2.74/mmbtu (+12.8% y/y), but recovered to $3.03 yesterday.

In the week ended October 27, gasoline demand rose 2.8% y/y, while total petroleum product demand fell 3.4% y/y. Gasoline inventories fell 4.9% y/y, while inventories of all petroleum products declined 4.9% y/y. Crude oil input to refineries improved 2.9% y/y in the last four weeks.

The energy price data are reported by the U.S. Department of Energy. The petroleum demand and inventory figures are from the Oil & Gas Journal Weekly. These data can be found in Haver's WEEKLY database. The daily figures are in DAILY and greater detail on prices, demand and production, along with regional breakdowns, are in OILWKLY.

Weekly Energy Prices 11/06/17 10/30/17 10/23/17 Y/Y % 2016 2015 2014
Retail Gasoline ($ per Gallon, Regular) 2.56 2.49 2.48 14.7 2.31 2.03 2.30
Light Sweet Crude Oil, WTI ($ per bbl.) 54.59 52.59 51.74 20.0 43.22 48.90 93.64
Natural Gas ($/mmbtu, LA, WSJ) 2.74 2.89 2.83 12.8 2.49 2.62 4.37
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