Saturday, May 16, 2015

An update on oil prices

by Bill McBride on 5/16/2015 09:20:00 PM

Demand for gasoline has picked up significantly recently. In February, U.S. vehicle miles driven hit a new all time high.  Gasoline prices have increased too (although some of the increase was due to refinery problems).

From the LA Times: Four-dollar gasoline returns to the L.A. area

On Friday, the average for a gallon of regular in the Los Angeles area was higher than $4 for the first time since July, according to daily fuel price reports by AAA and GasBuddy.com. The recent surge in regional fuel prices has left local drivers paying more on average than motorists anywhere else in the U.S.

Analysts attributed the rise to a supply pinch caused by problems at the state's refineries, and predicted relief may not arrive in time for Memorial Day weekend road trips.
Oil PricesClick on graph for larger image

This graph shows WTI and Brent spot oil prices from the EIA. (Prices Friday added).  According to Bloomberg, WTI was at $59.69 per barrel on Friday, and Brent at $66.81

Prices have increased sharply off the recent bottom, but are still down 40%+ year-over-year.