EIA Gasoline and Diesel Retail Fuels Prices Analysis Update, October 16, 2018
Exclusive EIA Weekly Report Analysis
By Dr. Nancy Yamaguchi
The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) released its weekly data on diesel and gasoline retail prices for the week ended October 15, 2018. On a national average basis, gasoline prices dropped by 2.4 cents/gallon, while diesel prices rose by 0.9 cents/gallon.
West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures prices dropped significantly by $3.06/b during the week ended October 12. Gasoline and diesel futures prices also fell. Retail prices during the week ended October 15 began to follow this trend. As of the time of this writing, WTI futures crude prices are under $72/b, suggesting that retail prices will continue to ease this week.
For the current week ended October 15, diesel prices increased by 0.9 cents to reach an average price of $3.394/gallon. Prices increased in all PADDs except for the Midwest PADD 2, where prices remained unchanged. The national average price was 60.7 cents per gallon higher than it was one year ago.
In the East Coast PADD 1, diesel prices rose by 2.2 cents to arrive at an average price of $3.382/gallon. This was the largest price increase among the five PADDs. Within PADD 1, New England prices rose by 1.7 cents to average $3.361/gallon. Central Atlantic diesel prices rose by 1.3 cents to average $3.544/gallon. Lower Atlantic prices increased by 2.9 cents to arrive at an average price of $3.272/gallon. PADD 1 prices were 58.5 cents/gallon above their prices for the same week last year.
In the Midwest PADD 2 market, retail diesel prices were unchanged at an average of $3.351/gallon. Prices were 59.4 cents/gallon above their level for the same week last year.
In the Gulf Coast PADD 3, retail diesel prices rose slightly by 0.3 cents to average $3.172/gallon. Prices were 56.0 cents higher than for the same week in the previous year.
In the Rocky Mountains PADD 4 market, retail diesel prices increased by 1.0 cent to average $3.400/gallon. PADD 4 prices were 51.4 cents higher than in the prior year.
In the West Coast PADD 5 market, retail diesel prices rose by 1.4 cents to average $3.880/gallon. This price was 79.1 cents above its level from last year. Prices excluding California went up by 3.3 cents to reach an average of $3.591/gallon. This price was 58.8 cents above the retail price for the same week last year. California diesel prices declined by 0.2 cents to arrive at an average price of $4.109/gallon. During the week of June 4, California prices had topped the $4/gallon mark, but crude prices waned, and product prices followed. However, diesel prices have crept up for the last eight consecutive weeks now, and $4/gallon diesel is once again the norm in California. California diesel prices were 95.0 cents above last year’s price.
U.S. retail gasoline prices fell by 2.4 cents to average $2.879/gallon during the week ended October 15. Prices rose in PADDs 3 and 5, while they fell in PADDs 1, 2 and 4. The national average price was 39.0 cents per gallon higher than it was one year ago.
For the current week ended October 15, East Coast PADD 1 retail prices for gasoline decreased by 1.9 cents to average $2.809/gallon. The average price was 33.9 cents higher than last year’s price. Within PADD 1, New England prices fell by 1.7 cents to average $2.854/gallon. Central Atlantic market prices decreased by 2.3 cents to average $2.914/gallon. Prices in the Lower Atlantic market fell by 1.5 cents to average $2.730/gallon.
In the Midwest PADD 2 market, retail gasoline prices dropped significantly by 6.4 cents to arrive at an average price of $2.758/gallon. This was the largest price drop among the PADDs. Gasoline pump prices were 38.3 cents higher than they were one year ago.
In the Gulf Coast PADD 3 market, gasoline prices edged up by 0.1 cents to average $2.627/gallon. PADD 3 continues to have the lowest average prices among the PADDs. Prices for the week were 36.5 cents higher than for the same week in 2017.
In the Rocky Mountains PADD 4 market, gasoline pump prices fell by 1.7 cents to arrive at an average of $2.982/gallon. Five weeks ago, PADD 4 joined PADD 5 in having gasoline prices of over $3/gallon, but pump prices eased below the $3.00/gallon mark during the week ended October 8, and they declined further in the past week. Prices were 45.6 cents higher than at the same time in 2017.
In the West Coast PADD 5 market, retail gasoline prices rose by 1.9 cents to arrive at an average of $3.494/gallon. This price was 55.6 cents higher than at the same time a year ago. This was the only significant price increase among the PADDs. PADD 5 continues to have the highest gasoline prices among the five PADDs. Excluding California, West Coast prices increased by 4.8 cents to average $3.235/gallon. This was 53.6 cents higher than at the same time in 2017. In California, pump prices rose only slightly by 0.1 cents to average $3.708/gallon. California prices were 63.1 cents per gallon above their levels from last year.