U.S. Energy Information Administration logo
‹ Analysis & Projections

Short-Term Energy Outlook

Release Date: May 8, 2018  |  Next Release Date: June 12, 2018  |  Full Report    |   Text Only   |   All Tables   |   All Figures

Prices

  • Brent crude oil spot prices averaged $72 per barrel (b) in April, an increase of $6/b from the March level and the first time monthly Brent crude oil prices have averaged more than $70/b since November 2014. EIA forecasts Brent spot prices will average $71/b in 2018 and $66/b in 2019, which are $7/b and $3/b higher, respectively, than in the April STEO. EIA expects West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil prices to average $5/b lower than Brent prices in both 2018 and 2019. NYMEX WTI futures and options contract values for August 2018 delivery traded during the five-day period ending May 3, 2018, suggest a range of $54/b to $84/b encompasses the market expectation for August 2018 WTI prices at the 95% confidence level.
  • For the 2018 April–September summer driving season, EIA forecasts U.S. regular gasoline retail prices to average $2.90/gallon (gal), 17 cents/gal higher than in last month’s STEO and up from an average of $2.41/gal last summer. The higher forecast gasoline prices are primarily the result of higher forecast crude oil prices. For the year 2018, EIA expects U.S. regular gasoline retail prices to average $2.79/gal. Monthly average gasoline prices are forecast to reach a summer peak of $2.97/gal in June, before falling to $2.86/gal in September.
  • EIA expects Henry Hub natural gas spot prices to average $3.01/million British thermal units (MMBtu) in 2018 and $3.11/MMBtu in 2019. NYMEX futures and options contract values for August 2018 delivery that traded during the five-day period ending May 3, 2018, suggest that a range of $2.32/MMBtu to $3.40/MMBtu encompasses the market expectation for August 2018 Henry Hub natural gas prices at the 95% confidence level.

Prices
  2016201720182019
aWest Texas Intermediate.
bAverage regular pump price.
cOn-highway retail.
dU.S. Residential average.
eElectric power generation fuel cost.
WTI Crude Oila
(dollars per barrel)
43.3350.7965.5860.86
Brent Crude Oil
(dollars per barrel)
43.7454.1570.6865.98
Gasolineb
(dollars testper gallon)
2.152.422.792.71
Dieselc
(dollars per gallon)
2.312.653.123.01
Heating Oild
(dollars per gallon)
2.102.512.952.97
Natural Gasd
(dollars per thousand cubic feet)
10.0410.9210.5210.91
Electricityd
(cents per kilowatthour)
12.5512.9013.0913.56
Coale
(dollars per million Btu)
2.112.082.202.22

Interactive Data Viewers

Provides custom data views of historical and forecast data

STEO Data browser ›
Real Prices Viewer ›

Related Tables
Table SF01. U.S. Motor Gasoline Summer Outlook PDF
Table SF02. Average Summer Residential Electricity Usage, Prices and Expenditures PDF
Table 1. U.S. Energy Markets Summary PDF
Table 2. Energy Prices PDF
Table 4c. U.S. Regional Motor Gasoline Prices and Inventories PDF
Table 5b. U.S. Regional Natural Gas Prices PDF
Table 7c. U.S. Regional Retail Electricity Prices PDF
Related Articles    
Today In Energy Daily
What Drives Crude Oil Prices? Monthly
2018 Summer Fuels Outlook Apr-2018 PDF
2017-2018 Winter Fuels Outlook Oct-2017 PDF
Weather Sensitivity in Natural Gas Markets Oct-2014 PDF
2014 Outlook for Gulf of Mexico Hurricane-Related Production Outages Jun-2014 PDF
Summer 2013 Outlook for Residential Electric Bills Jun-2013 PDF
Constraints in New England likely to affect regional energy prices this winter Jan-2013 PDF
Brent Crude Oil Spot Price Forecast Jul-2012 PDF
Crude Oil Price Formation Slideshow May-2011 PDF
Probabilities of Possible Future Prices Apr-2010 PDF
Energy Price Volatility and Forecast Uncertainty Oct-2009 PDF
The Implications of Lower Natural Gas Prices for Electric Generators in the Southeast May-2009 PDF