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Economy in Brief

U.S. Gasoline & Crude Oil Prices Rise
by Tom Moeller  February 6, 2018

Retail gasoline prices increased to $2.64 per gallon (15.0% y/y) last week from $2.61 per gallon. They remained at the highest level since mid-September. Haver Analytics constructs factors adjusting for the seasonal variation in gasoline pump prices. The seasonally-adjusted price increased to $2.90 per gallon, the highest level since December 2014.

WTI crude oil prices improved to $65.21 per barrel (22.3% y/y) last week following the prior week's increase to $65.04 per barrel. It was the highest cost since early-December 2014. Prices declined yesterday to $64.15 per barrel. Brent crude oil prices declined to $68.06 per barrel last week and slipped to $67.69 yesterday.

Natural gas prices declined to $3.25/mmbtu last week (+5.4% y/y) and weakened to $2.79/mmbtu yesterday.

In the week ended January 26, gasoline demand strengthened 7.1% y/y, while total petroleum product demand increased 7.5% y/y. Gasoline inventories declined 5.8% y/y, while inventories of all petroleum products fell 8.5% y/y. Crude oil input to refineries improved 1.7% 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 02/05/18 01/29/18 01/22/18 Y/Y % 2017 2016 2015
Retail Gasoline ($ per Gallon, Regular) 2.64 2.61 2.57 15.0 2.47 2.31 2.03
Light Sweet Crude Oil, WTI ($ per bbl.) 65.21 65.04 63.76 22.3 50.87 43.22 48.90
Natural Gas ($/mmbtu, LA, WSJ) 3.25 3.43 3.88 5.4 2.96 2.49 2.62
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