August 8, 2017
Crude Oil Prices
North Sea Brent crude oil spot prices averaged $48 per barrel in July, a $2 per barrel higher from June. This price was the lowest monthly average for Brent spot prices since November last year when prices averaged $45 per barrel.
The North Sea Brent crude oil spot price is forecast to average $51 per barrel in 2017 and $52 per barrel in 2018. The West Texas Intermediate crude oil spot price is expected to average $2 less per barrel than Brent prices in both 2017 and 2018.
Gasoline and Diesel Prices
U.S. crude oil production averaged an estimated 8.9 million barrels per day in 2016. It is forecast to average 9.3 million barrel per day in 2017 and 9.9 million barrels per day in 2018, which would mark the highest annual average production in U.S. history, surpassing the previous record of 9.6 million barrel per day set in 1970.
U.S. regular gasoline retail prices averaged $2.30 per gallon in July, down 5 cents per gallon from the average in June but 6 cents higher than in July 2016.
For the 2017 April-through-September summer driving season, U.S. regular gasoline retail prices are expected to average of $2.37 per gallon, 14 cents higher than last summer. U.S. regular gasoline retail prices are forecast to average $2.33 per gallon in 2017 and $2.33 per gallon in 2018.
The Energy Information Administration expects on-highway diesel fuel retail prices, which has averaged $2.59 per gallon so far in 2017, will average $2.72 per gallon in 2018.
The peak price of $4.10 per gallon for gasoline in Nebraska was reached on July 15, 2008.
The peak price of $4.77 per gallon for diesel in Nebraska was reached on July 17, 2008.
Because taxes and retail distribution costs are generally stable, movements in gasoline and diesel prices are driven primarily by changes in crude oil prices and wholesale margins. Crude oil prices that differ from the forecast would be reflected in the price of motor fuels. Each dollar per barrel of sustained change in crude oil prices relative to the forecast translates into approximately a 2.4 cent-per-gallon change in product prices.