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Economy in Brief

U.S. Energy Prices Increase
by Tom Moeller  May 30, 2018

Retail gasoline prices rose to $2.96 per gallon last week (23.1% y/y) from $2.92 per gallon during the prior week. It was the highest price level since November 2014. Haver Analytics constructs factors adjusting for the seasonal variation in gasoline pump prices. The seasonally-adjusted price increased to $2.80 per gallon, the highest level since mid-February.

West Texas Intermediate crude oil prices remained elevated at an average of $70.96 (+40.9% y/y) per barrel last week versus $71.31 per barrel in the week prior. Prices declined yesterday to $66.73 per barrel. Brent crude oil prices increased to an average of $78.75 per barrel last week and were $75.34 yesterday.

Natural gas prices improved to an average of $2.83/mmbtu last week (-9.7% y/y) from $2.78/mmbtu and were steady yesterday.

In the four-weeks ending May 18, gasoline demand increased 1.0% y/y, while total petroleum product demand rose 1.5% y/y. Gasoline inventories declined 2.5% y/y, while inventories of all petroleum products dropped 8.4% y/y. Crude oil input to refineries declined 3.0% y/y in the last four weeks.

This data is reported by 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, along with regional breakdowns, are in OILWKLY.

Weekly Energy Prices 05/28/18 05/21/18 05/14/18 Y/Y % 2017 2016 2015
Retail Gasoline ($ per Gallon Regular, Monday Price) 2.96 2.92 2.87 23.1 2.47 2.31 2.03
Light Sweet Crude Oil, WTI ($ per bbl, Previous Week's Average) 70.96 71.31 70.60 40.9 50.87 43.22 48.90
Natural Gas ($/mmbtu, LA, Previous Week's Average) 2.83 2.78 2.73 -9.7 2.96 2.49 2.62
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