Diesel and Gasoline retail prices keep increasing
The national average diesel fuel price increased almost 2 cents to $3.96 per gallon, 39 cents per gallon higher than last year at this time. Prices increased in all regions except the Midwest, where the price was down about a penny to $3.85 per gallon. The largest price increase for diesel also came on the West Coast, where the price increased 4.3 cents to $4.16 per gallon. The East Coast price is a nickel above the $4-per-gallon mark and surpasses last week’s price to set a record for February. The Gulf Coast price increased 2.6 cents to $3.89 per gallon. The Rocky Mountain region, where the price is $3.86 per gallon, retains the cheapest diesel in the Nation for the second straight week.
The U.S. average retail price of regular gasoline increased almost 7 cents to $3.59 per gallon as of February 20, 2012, about 40 cents per gallon higher than last year at this time. Prices were up across all regions, with the largest increase coming on the West Coast due to a large 20-cent-per-gallon increase in California, the second largest week-over-week increase for the state since EIA started collecting data. The Midwest average price increased 5.7 cents to $3.46 per gallon, while the Gulf Coast price increased 4.8 cents to $3.48 per gallon. The East Coast price rose 4.2 cents to $3.65 per gallon, and had the largest increase compared to a year ago, at 48 cents. The cheapest gasoline remains in the Rocky Mountain region, where the price has been the cheapest all year and is currently $3.10 per gallon.
Propane inventories continue to draw
Propane inventories in the United States posted a seasonal draw of 1.6 million barrels last week to end at 44.9 million barrels, but remained strong and above the year-ago level and the 5-year range. Midwest regional stocks drew by 1.2 million barrels, and East Coast regional stocks drew by 0.5 million barrels. Elsewhere, the Gulf Coast region added 0.3 million barrels, while the Rocky Mountain/West Coast region was down slightly, by 0.1 million barrels. Propylene non-fuel use inventories represented 10.6 percent of total propane inventories.
U.S. average residential and wholesale heating fuel prices increase
The U.S. average residential heating oil price increased by slightly more than 1 cent per gallon during the week ending February 20, 2012 to $4.04 per gallon. This price is nearly 43 cents per gallon higher than the same time last year. The wholesale heating oil price increased by less than 1 cent per gallon over the same period to a price just above $3.26 per gallon, 42 cents per gallon higher than last year at this time.
The average residential propane price remained flat during the week ending February 20, holding at $2.86 per gallon, 4 cents per gallon higher than last year. The average wholesale propane price increased by less than 1 cent per gallon to $1.17 per gallon. This was a decrease of 23 cents per gallon when compared with the February 21, 2011 price of $1.40 per gallon.