The escalation in wholesale prices of gasoline, furnace oil
and diesel continued over the past two-week period with the
average NYMEX recorded wholesale price of gasoline
increasing 3.3 cpl, furnace oil 3.3 cpl and diesel 3.1 cpl.
usual a variety of factors have combined to contribute to
this situation. Firstly, the price of Brent crude over the
past 60 days has risen in excess of 3%, while WTI prices
have dropped significantly over this same period. Middle
East geopolitical issues and reduced production from Libya,
IRAQ and the North Sea have exerted upward pressures on
Brent market prices. Indeed, the gap between WTI and Brent
crude, which on October 1 was calculated at $5.90 per
barrel, has now grown to in excess of $19.00 per barrel.
Reduced refining capacity along the North American Atlantic
coast resulting from seasonal maintenance and winter product
changeover, combined with an increase in consumer demand due
to improved US economic conditions, has served to pressure
inventory reserves creating further upward pressures on the
wholesale prices of gasoline.
Continued growth in the export of diesel and furnace oil to
Europe, Asia and South America along with increased domestic
demand has similarly impacted distillate pricing.
anticipated that the return to normal production capacity of
regional refineries will assist the restoration of normal
inventory levels, thus offering some degree of wholesale