official nebraska government website

Average Residential
Heating Oil Prices Nebraska

Analysis

The traditional heating season started with a statewide average price of $3.51 per gallon for heating oil. On October 6, 2008, the average residential heating oil price had dropped 15 cents from the previous month (see the table at the end of this report). The graph below shows the spread in prices from month to month and from this year compared to previous years. This week's average price was 82 cents (or 30 percent) higher than the price at this time last year.

Other states in the Midwest Region had comparable prices ranging from $3.48 to $3.69 with the region averaging $3.58 per gallon. States adjacent to Nebraska, such as Iowa, Minnesota, and Wisconsin, had prices of $3.57, $3.69, and $3.62, respectively.

This heating season begins with a 24-cent rack-to-retail margin, while the Nebraska average retail price is among the lowest of the eight surveyed states in the region. (Nebraska has the highest average wholesale price among the five surveyed states in the region.)

For the week ending October 3, the Midwest heating oil inventory level was in the lower half of the normal range for this time of year at 2.4 million barrels.

Notes: The annual report for the 2007-2008 winter season is available. An archive houses annual reports from previous years.

This symbol indicates a rule of thumb follows. A general rule of thumb: A dollar increase in the West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil price per barrel will result in a 2.5-cent increase in the price of heating oil per gallon. Likewise, a dollar decrease in the WTI crude oil price per barrel will result in a 2.5-cent decrease in the price of heating oil per gallon.

Heating Season

The Nebraska Energy Office has participated in the State Heating Oil and Propane Program for eight years. During the heating season (October to March), the staff contact companies each week who supply heating oil to Nebraska, collect Monday's retail price, and submit the data to the Energy Information Administration. The Energy Information Administration calculates the average price shown in the table below.

At times, Nebraska's average residential heating oil price has been the lowest price in the Midwest Region. The Energy Information Administration theorized that this was due to minimal transportation costs. Another reason would be the number of participating states. Since state participation in the program is voluntary, heating oil prices were not surveyed in each state in the Midwest Region. Kansas and Oklahoma might also have had low prices--possibly lower than Nebraska's because the two states are closer to heating oil sources.

Off Season

During the off season (April through September), the Nebraska Energy Office staff continue to contact the same suppliers who were contacted during the heating season. Staff contact suppliers once a month instead of once a week since the price of heating oil is usually not as volatile during the off season. The Nebraska Energy Office staff calculate the average price, shown in the table below, from the suppliers' retail prices on the first Monday of the month.

State Heating Oil and Propane Program

The Energy Information Administration, the independent statistical and analytical agency within the U.S. Department of Energy, conducts the State Heating Oil and Propane Program from October to March--the heating season--each year. The Energy Information Administration collects prices for the program each week from participating states and calculates a state average price, a regional average price, and a national average price which can be seen in the report Residential Heating Oil Prices by Region and State.

Midwest Region

For statistical purposes, the Energy Information Administration defines the Midwest Region to include the states of Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, and Wisconsin.

Price Explanation

The prices represent average residential home heating charge prices for home delivery of No. 2 heating oil, excluding taxes and cash discounts.

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line graph showing heating oil prices in Nebraska

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Nebraska's Average Residential Heating Oil Prices

2001/2002 – 2008/2009

Heating Season Off Season
Oct Nov Dec Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep
2001/2002
First Monday $1.076 $0.916 $0.857 $0.825 $0.800 $0.819 $0.894 $0.908 $0.887 $0.889 $0.905 $0.982
Second Monday $1.038 $0.916 $0.824 $0.824 $0.802 $0.844
Third Monday $1.026 $0.874 $0.805 $0.798 $0.809 $0.865
Fourth Monday $0.971 $0.878 $0.799 $0.790 $0.808
Fifth Monday $0.940 $0.812
2002/2003
First Monday $1.073 $1.048 $1.036 $1.094 $1.162 $1.336 $1.074 $1.027 $1.023 $1.026 $1.051 $1.113
Second Monday $1.086 $1.025 $1.022 $1.084 $1.269 $1.339
Third Monday $1.090 $1.008 $1.017 $1.098 $1.277 $1.313
Fourth Monday $1.077 $1.039 $1.047 $1.113 $1.302
Fifth Monday $1.078
2003/2004
First Monday $1.109 $1.109 $1.088 $1.108 $1.171 $1.177 $1.205 $1.272 $1.292 $1.287 $1.381 $1.457
Second Monday $1.168 $1.105 $1.088 $1.126 $1.153 $1.193
Third Monday $1.161 $1.122 $1.101 $1.143 $1.154 $1.197
Fourth Monday $1.148 $1.114 $1.108 $1.168 $1.157
Fifth Monday $1.106
Heating Season Off Season
Oct Nov Dec Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep
2004/2005
First Monday $1.621 $1.768 $1.629 $1.495 $1.557 $1.727 $1.900 $1.822 $1.792 $1.912 $1.892 $2.365
Second Monday $1.661 $1.710 $1.548 $1.496 $1.554 $1.773
Third Monday $1.736 $1.678 $1.546 $1.519 $1.571
Fourth Monday $1.788 $1.672 $1.531 $1.549 $1.649
Fifth Monday $1.688 $1.566
2005/2006
First Monday $2.608 $2.269 $2.014 $2.001 $2.067 $2.108 $2.174 $2.370 $2.494 $2.554 $2.894 $2.609
Second Monday $2.661 $2.181 $2.050 $2.034 $2.044 $2.092
Third Monday $2.686 $2.106 $2.048 $2.003 $2.033
Fourth Monday $2.804 $2.070 $2.012 $2.030 $2.061
Fifth Monday $2.515 $2.044
2006/2007
First Monday $2.128 $2.128 $2.221 $2.169 $2.079 $2.246 $2.478 $2.447 $2.418 $2.472 $2.586 $2.690
Second Monday $2.110 $2.209 $2.189 $2.117 $2.097 $2.293
Third Monday $2.118 $2.215 $2.204 $2.045 $2.108
Fourth Monday $2.138 $2.230 $2.190 $2.015 $2.181
Fifth Monday $2.138 $2.009
Heating Season Off Season
Oct Nov Dec Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep
2007/2008
First Monday $2.932 $3.036 $3.005 $2.875 $3.242 $3.528 $3.728 $4.240 $4.247 $3.954 $3.664
Second Monday $2.694 $3.006 $3.008 $2.942 $2.957 $3.424
Third Monday $2.698 $3.011 $2.964 $2.904 $3.030 $3.552
Fourth Monday $2.720 $3.076 $2.954 $2.874 $3.177
Fifth Monday $2.780 $2.982
2008/2009
First Monday $3.513 NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA
Second Monday NA NA NA NA NA NA
Third Monday NA NA NA NA NA NA
Fourth Monday NA NA NA NA NA
Fifth Monday NA

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Sources: State Heating Oil and Propane Survey and the Weekly Petroleum Status Report. Energy Information Administration, Washington, DC. Nebraska Energy Office, Lincoln, NE.

Note: NA=Not Available.

This report was updated on October 3, 2008.

Typically, there is one week between updates during the heating season

and one month between updates during the cooling season.