Category: fuel

Fuel Flash – September 2020

During August, oil prices continued trading in a very narrow range but did achieve a small gain, starting the month at $41 and closing near $43 per barrel.  The following graph shows the daily price movements over the past three months: Significant uncertainty about the economy due to the virus’ impact has persisted for several months which has limited movement in prices.  In addition to oil’s stagnancy, overall average wholesale and retail prices for August were flat compared to July. 

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Fuel Flash – August 2020

During July, oil prices traded in an extremely narrow range, primarily between $40 and $42 per barrel throughout the month.  The following graph shows the daily price movements over the past three months: Although prices increased in rapidly May when COVID-19 restrictions started to ease, they lost momentum in June, then stagnated in July as concerns grew about a resurgence of the virus.  Significant uncertainty regarding an economic recovery from the virus’ impact cast doubt on the demand for oil

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Fuel Flash – July 2020

Oil prices traded in a narrow range throughout June following the significant rebound that began in May.  Although prices broke through $40 per barrel very briefly, they were mainly in the high-$30’s for the entire month.  The following graph shows the daily price movements over the past three months: When COVID-19 restrictions started easing during May, businesses reopened and travel began to increase resulting in growing demand for oil and fuel.  In addition, OPEC+ extended their production limits to help

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Fuel Flash – June 2020

Following the historic collapse near the end of April, oil prices began rebounding throughout May.  May’s prices started slightly under $19/barrel and nearly doubled by the end of the month closing over $35/barrel.  The following graph shows the daily price movements over the past three months: The historic negative price dive in April was caused by a lack of liquidity in the futures markets when traders fled their positions as rising inventory levels threatened to exceed storage capacity.  During May,

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Fuel Flash – May 2020

As part of the sharp decline that began in January, oil prices set another somber record in April when they crashed below zero for a short period during the month.  Prices started the month at $20/barrel and managed to claw their way back to $19 by the end of the month despite the historic dip in negative territory.  April’s ending price is 70% below the start of this year along with the same time last year.  The following graph shows

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Fuel Flash – April 2020

The sharp decline for oil prices that began in January has accelerated through March.  Prices declined by about 60% during March, falling to roughly $20/barrel.  They are now just under a third of the level where they started this year along with where they were a year ago.  The following graph shows the daily price movements over the past three months: For some additional perspective on this remarkable decline, the following graph shows the daily price movements over the past

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Fuel Flash – March 2020

Oil prices began to show some potential to recover in early February following their sharp drop in January.  However, by the middle of the month, another sharp decline occurred with prices closing February just under $45 per barrel.  Oil prices have now fallen almost 27% since the beginning of the year and are about 22% lower than the same time last year.  The following graph shows the daily price movements over the past three months: The rapid decline which started

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Fuel Flash – February 2020

Oil prices dropped sharply and unexpectedly in two stages during January.  Prices declined by 16% from the start of the year to close January just above $51 per barrel.  The following graph shows the daily price movements over the past three months: The dramatic decline in January followed a tense period in December with rising oil prices.  Near the end of 2019, the US and Iran appeared to be moving toward a major military confrontation following the US’ assassination of

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Fuel Flash – January 2020

Oil prices continued climbing higher throughout December, gaining over 10% to close the month and year at $61 per barrel.  Over the past year, oil increased by more than 33%.  The following graph shows the daily price movements over the past three months: During December, two primary factors caused oil prices to move higher.  The first, during early December, was a surprise announcement from OPEC regarding their agreement to make deeper cuts in production.  The second, near the middle of

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Fuel Flash – December 2019

Oil prices slowly climbed higher throughout November but gave back most of their gains at the end of the month.  Prices opened the month near $54 and closed just over $55 per barrel.  The following graph shows the daily price movements over the past three months: There were no significant developments in November that drove prices gradually higher.  The main reason was attributable to cautious optimism that the US and China would reach a Phase 1 agreement toward resolving their

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