The average wholesale propane price on December 19, 2005, increased almost four cents from last week to $1.17 per gallon (see the table at the end of this report). The graph below shows the spread in Nebraska prices from month to month and from this year compared to previous years. This week's average price was 25 cents (or 26 percent) higher than the price at this time last year.
Other states in the Midwest Region had comparable wholesale prices ranging from $1.15 to $1.20 per gallon with the region averaging $1.18. States adjacent to Nebraska, such as Kansas, South Dakota, Iowa, and Missouri, had prices of $1.15, $1.18, $1.17, and $1.16, respectively.
With 20.4 million barrels, the Midwest Region inventory level was at the bottom boundary of the normal range for this time of year. The Midwest reported the largest regional decrease in inventories this week. Inventories dropped 1.9 million barrels due to cold temperatures in the Midwest. The Energy Information Administration projects that, even if this trend of sharp declines continued each week through the end of the month, propane inventories would still maintain the modest inventory cushion that was built up during the months of October and November.
Notes: The annual report for the 2004-2005 winter season is available. An archive houses annual reports from previous years.
The Oil Price Information Service collects wholesale propane prices each week for Nebraska and eleven (11) other states in the Midwest Region during the heating season (October to March). The Energy Information Administration, the independent statistical and analytical agency within the U.S. Department of Energy, uses the prices collected by the Oil Price Information Service to calculate a state average price, a regional average price, and a national average price which can be seen in the report Wholesale Propane Prices by Region and State.
Prices are not collected during the off season (April through September).
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.