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Short-Term Energy Outlook

Release Date: February 7, 2017  |  Next Release Date: March 7, 2017  |  Full Report    |   Text Only   |   All Tables   |   All Figures

U.S. Liquid Fuels

  • U.S. crude oil production averaged an estimated 8.9 million b/d in 2016. U.S crude oil production is forecast to average 9.0 million b/d in 2017 and 9.5 million b/d in 2018.
  • Benchmark North Sea Brent crude oil spot prices averaged $55/barrel (b) in January, a $1/b increase from December. This price was $24/b higher than the January 2016 average, and it was the highest monthly average for Brent spot prices since July 2015.
  • EIA forecasts Brent crude oil prices to average $55/b in 2017 and $57/b in 2018. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil prices are forecast to average about $1/b less than Brent prices in 2017. The NYMEX contract values for April 2017 delivery traded during the five-day period ending February 2 suggest that a range from $45/b to $65/b encompasses the market expectation of WTI prices in April 2017 at the 95% confidence level.
  • U.S. regular gasoline retail prices are expected to decrease from an average of $2.35/gallon (gal) in January 2017 to an average of $2.27/gal in February and then rise to $2.33/gal in March. U.S. regular gasoline retail prices are forecast to average $2.39/gal in 2017 and $2.44/gal in 2018.

U.S. Petroleum and Other Liquids
  2015 2016 2017 2018
Crude Oil prices (dollars per barrel)
WTI Spot Average 48.67 43.33 53.46 56.18
Brent Spot Average 52.32 43.74 54.54 57.18
Imported Average 46.34 38.82 49.95 52.68
Refiner Average Acquisition Cost 48.40 40.93 52.46 55.20
Retail prices including taxes (dollars per gallon)
Regular Gasoline 2.43 2.15 2.39 2.44
Diesel Fuel 2.71 2.31 2.72 2.85
Heating Oil 2.65 2.10 2.61 2.75
Production (million barrels per day)
Crude Oil 9.42 8.88 8.98 9.53
Natural Gas Plant Liquids 3.34 3.49 3.75 4.18
Fuel Ethanol 0.97 1.00 1.01 1.01
Biodiesel 0.082 0.100 0.104 0.111
Consumption (million barrels per day)
Motor Gasoline 9.18 9.29 9.29 9.36
Distillate Fuel Oil 4.00 3.85 3.93 4.04
Jet Fuel 1.55 1.60 1.62 1.61
Total Consumption 19.53 19.58 19.84 20.17
Primary Assumptions (percent change from previous year)
U.S. Real GDP Growth 2.6 1.6 2.3 2.6
Heating Degree Days -10.2 -5.2 3.3 2.6
Distillate-weighted Industrial Production 1.0 0.7 1.4 2.6

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