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Economy in Brief

U.S. Gasoline Prices Remain Elevated; Crude Oil Prices Strengthen
by Tom Moeller  July 3, 2018

Retail gasoline prices improved to $2.84 per gallon last week (25.8% y/y) from $2.83 per gallon during the prior week. Haver Analytics constructs factors adjusting for the seasonal variation in gasoline pump prices. The seasonally-adjusted price rose to $2.76 per gallon, its highest level since early-last month.

West Texas Intermediate crude oil prices increased w/w to an average of $72.16 per barrel last week (61.6% y/y) from $66.35. It was the highest price since late-November of last year and up from $28.13 early in February 2016. Yesterday, prices strengthened further to $73.94 per barrel. Brent crude oil prices rose last week to an average of $76.68 and were $77.31 yesterday.

Natural gas prices held steady for a second week at an average of $2.95/mmbtu last week (-1.2% y/y) and were $2.87 yesterday.

In the four-weeks ending June 22, gasoline demand slipped 0.1% y/y, while total petroleum product demand increased 1.5% y/y. Gasoline inventories improved 0.1% y/y, while inventories of all petroleum products declined 8.4% y/y. Crude oil input to refineries rose 2.7% y/y in the last four weeks.

These data are 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 07/02/18 06/25/18 06/18/18 Y/Y % 2017 2016 2015
Retail Gasoline ($ per Gallon Regular, Monday Price) 2.84 2.83 2.88 25.8 2.47 2.31 2.03
Light Sweet Crude Oil, WTI ($ per bbl, Previous Week's Average) 72.16 66.35 66.20 61.6 50.87 43.22 48.90
Natural Gas ($/mmbtu, LA, Previous Week's Average) 2.95 2.95 2.95 -1.2 2.96 2.49 2.62
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