‹ Analysis & Projections

Short-Term Energy Outlook

Release Date: October 11, 2017  |  Next Release Date: November 7, 2017  |  Full Report    |   Text Only   |   All Tables   |   All Figures

Prices

  • North Sea Brent crude oil spot prices averaged $56 per barrel (b) in September, an increase of $4/b from the average in August. EIA forecasts Brent spot prices to average $52/b in 2017 and $54/b in 2018, which is $1/b higher in 2017 and $2/b higher in 2018 compared with last month's forecast. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) average crude oil prices are forecast to be $3.50/b lower than Brent prices in 2018. NYMEX contract values for January 2018 delivery that traded during the five-day period ending October 5 suggest that a range of $40/b to $65/b encompasses the market expectation for January WTI prices at the 95% confidence level.
  • After reaching a two-year high of $2.69 per gallon (gal) on September 11, U.S. regular gasoline retail prices fell to an average of $2.57/gal as of October 2, as U.S. refinery capacity and gasoline production gradually came back online following Hurricane Harvey. EIA forecasts the U.S. regular gasoline retail price will average $2.49/gal in October and fall to an average of $2.33/gal in December.
  • In September, the average Henry Hub natural gas spot price was $2.98 per million British thermal units (MMBtu), up 8 cents/MMBtu from the August level. Expected growth in natural gas exports and domestic natural gas consumption in 2018 contribute to the forecast Henry Hub natural gas spot price rising from an annual average of $3.03/MMBtu in 2017 to $3.19/MMBtu in 2018. NYMEX contract values for January 2018 delivery that traded during the five-day period ending October 5 suggest that a range of $2.28/MMBtu to $4.63/MMBtu encompasses the market expectation for January Henry Hub natural gas prices at the 95% confidence level.
Prices
  2015 2016 2017 2018
a West Texas Intermediate.
b Average regular pump price.
c On-highway retail.
d U.S. Residential average.
e Electric power generation fuel cost.
WTI Crude Oila
(dollars per barrel)
48.67 43.33 49.69 50.57
Brent Crude Oil
(dollars per barrel)
52.32 43.74 52.43 54.07
Gasolineb
(dollars testper gallon)
2.43 2.15 2.39 2.41
Dieselc
(dollars per gallon)
2.71 2.31 2.64 2.79
Heating Oild
(dollars per gallon)
2.65 2.10 2.50 2.66
Natural Gasd
(dollars per thousand cubic feet)
10.36 10.04 11.10 10.99
Electricityd
(cents per kilowatthour)
12.65 12.55 12.96 13.31
Coale
(dollars per million Btu)
2.23 2.11 2.14 2.20

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