Analysis by Dr. Nancy Yamaguchi
The Energy Information Administration (EIA) released its weekly data on diesel and gasoline retail prices for the week ended January 30, 2017. Both gasoline and diesel prices subsided for the third consecutive week. Retail prices had increased steadily during the month and a half following the November 30 OPEC meeting, but crude prices have weakened over the past two weeks, and product prices have followed.
For the current week ended January 30, diesel prices declined 0.7 cents (cts) to an average price of $2.562/gallon.
PADD 1 retail diesel prices fell 0.5cts to $2.622/gallon. In New England, prices dropped by 1.4cts to $2.662/gallon. Central Atlantic diesel prices fell 1.4 cents to average $2.77/gallon. Lower Atlantic prices rose slightly by 0.3cts to average $2.51/gallon. Overall PADD 1 prices were 51.1cts/gallon above their prices for the same week last year.
In the Midwest PADD 2 market, retail diesel prices fell 1.2cts to average $2.50/gallon. This price was 55.9cts/gallon above its level for the same week last year.
In the Gulf Coast PADD 3, retail diesel prices dropped by 0.6cts to average $2.408/gallon. This price was 49.1cts higher than in the previous year.
In the Rocky Mountains PADD 4 market, retail diesel prices declined 1.6cts to $2.516/gallon. This price was 54.7cts higher than in the prior year.
In the West Coast PADD 5 market, diesel pump prices edged down by 0.1cts, to $2.84/gallon. This price was 57.2cts above its level last year. Prices, excluding California, fell 0.6cts to $2.744/gallon, which was 62.7cts above the retail price for the same week last year. California diesel prices rose 0.4cts to $2.927/gallon, 52.8cts higher than last year’s price. Prices were influenced by mechanical failure of one of the hydrocrackers (20 kbpd capacity) at the 77 kbpd Phillips 66 Rodeo refinery near San Francisco.
U.S. retail gasoline prices dropped by 3.0cts to $2.296/gallon for the week ended January 30. This price was 47.4cts higher than for the same week in 2016.
In the East Coast PADD 1, prices for gasoline fell 2.8cts to $2.32/gallon. This price was 48.4cts higher than last year’s price. Prices dropped 2.3cts in New England to $2.314/gallon. Central Atlantic market prices fell by 2.7cts to $2.458/gallon. Prices in the Lower Atlantic market dropped by 3.0cts to bring prices to an average of $2.22/gallon, 45.7cts higher than last year’s average price. PBF Energy reopened the 55 kbpd coker at its Delaware City refinery, which had been out of service since January 12.
In the Midwest PADD 2 market, gasoline prices retreated 5.1cts to average $2.168/gallon. Gasoline pump prices were 54.6cts higher than they were one year ago, the largest year-over-year price increase among the five PADDs.
In the Gulf Coast PADD 3 market, prices fell 3.5cts to average $2.089/gallon. Prices for the week were 49.9cts higher than for the same week in 2016. Supply was reduced by reduced runs at the 350 kbpd Valero Port Arthur refinery, which suffered a fire that the company reported as a minor event at its larger crude unit. The hydrocracker was in the process of being restarted.
In the Rocky Mountains PADD 4 region, gasoline prices were almost unchanged with a small decline of 0.1cts to average $2.255/gallon. This price was 45.2cts higher than at the same time in 2016.
The West Coast PADD 5 market was the only PADD where retail gasoline prices rose last week with a small increase of 0.2cts to an average price of $2.678/gallon. This was 30.3cts higher than at the same time a year ago, whereas the U.S. average price was 47.4cts higher year-over-year. Excluding California, prices declined 0.9cts to an average of $2.483/gallon. This was 41cts higher than at the same time in 2016.
California prices increased 0.8cts to an average pump price of $2.791/gallon, 24cts higher than last year’s price for the same week. Los Angeles prices rose 2.2cts to 2.863/gallon. This price was 13.6cts higher than the price for the same week in 2016. San Francisco pump prices fell by 0.5cts to average $2.842/gallon, 30.9cts above last year’s price. Seattle prices decreased 0.3cts to average $2.744/gallon, 52.7cts higher than prices one year ago. PADD 5 prices were influenced by the closure of the 265 kbpd Tesoro Carson refinery near Los Angeles, caused by heavy rains. Coking and isomerization units were out of service.