U.S. GAS PRICES UP
The average price of a gallon of gasoline in the United States gained nearly 25 cents in the past four weeks, according to a survey released on Sunday.
Regular-grade gas climbed to around $2.02 per gallon in the March 20 survey, from $1.77 on Feb. 19, survey publisher Trilby Lundberg said in an interview.
The chief cause of the gasoline price rise was the recent increase in crude oil prices due in part to a weaker U.S. dollar, Lundberg said.
U.S. crude futures have soared by about 33 percent from $29.64 on Feb. 19 to $39.44 on March 18.
"We may see gasoline prices increase further even if crude oil prices do not continue rising because U.S. refiners have to prepare summer-grade gasoline to meet a May 1 deadline in most of the country," she said.
It costs more to make summer-grade gasoline, which has a lower vapor pressure to prevent smog, she explained.
In the Lundberg panel of around 2,500 gas stations in large cities in 48 states, the lowest average retail price for gas was in Newark, New Jersey, at $1.66 per gallon, and the highest was in Los Angeles, at $2.72 per gallon.
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REUTERS - Brent crude futures LCOc1 were down 72 cents at $61.49 per barrel at 1020 GMT, having fallen by 1.5 percent on Tuesday, its largest one-day drop in a month. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude CLc1 was at $55.12 per barrel, down 58 cents.
BLOOMBERG - Prices dropped during the session as the International Energy Agency said the recent recovery in oil prices, coupled with milder-than-normal winter weather, is slowing demand growth. The worsening outlook for consumption dampened some of the enthusiasm that OPEC and its allies will extend supply curbs.
Global energy needs rise more slowly than in the past but still expand by 30% between today and 2040. This is the equivalent of adding another China and India to today’s global demand.
Product exports have grown significantly over the past several years and are expected to continue to grow as Russian refineries add capacity to produce more high-quality products.