Have gas and oil prices reached their peak for 2012?

Have gas and oil prices reached their peak for 2012?

Detroit : MI : USA | Apr 13, 2012 at 9:13 AM PDT
Views: Pending
Mark Fisher: Someone at IEA leaked SPR release announcement

Four separate reports out this week suggest that the pain at the pump is starting to gradually ease for most Americans and possibly showing signs that the worst may be over.

According to the most recent AAA Daily Fuel Gauge Report Monday the average price of regular gas slipped two-tenths of a cent this week holding at a national average of $3.92 per-gallon, seven cents lower than last year's high of $3.99 and fifteen cents below 2008's record high of $4.11.

The AAA report compiled prices from more than 100,000 retail outlets across America and found that of the ten states with prices over $4.00 a gallon, two of them (Michigan and Indiana) dropped below that mark this week bring the number down to (a still high but lower) eight.

Similarly, a survey conducted by the Energy Department this week found a modest 0.2-cent drop in the national price average. According to their data the department estimates the average hovering around $3.93 a gallon.

In a quote published by The Los Angeles Times, senior petroleum analyst for GasBuddy.com Patrick DeHaan said, "Gasoline prices in the hardest-hit areas have finally shown signs of relief, with prices falling now in Chicago as they have for a few weeks in California."

Also quoted in the article, independent fuel price analyst Bob van der Valk told the Times he believes that if the we can get through the summer without any major hurricane damage and/or any new military conflicts in the Middle East, "we should see the average price for gasoline in the U.S. drop back down to under $3 per gallon."

Possibly fueling some of the optimistic forecasts may well be the most recent report put out by the International Energy Agency (IEA.) In its report Thursday the IEA said, 'The oil market has broken a two-year cycle of tightening supply conditions as demand growth weakens and top exporter Saudi Arabia increases output."

The agency, which is an adviser on energy policy to most industrialized nations says there may already be a significant rise in global oil stocks due to the increased supply and slower demand growth.

Oil prices reached a high not seen since 2008 of $128.40 a barrel in the beginning of March mainly do to worries over recent sanctions imposed on Iranian oil exports. However, Thursday the market found oil hovering around $120.00 a barrel and according to the IEA may fall even further in the near future.

"Easing first quarter 2012 fundamentals have seen prices recently lose most of the $5 per barrel they gained in March. The muted impact so far is partly because much of this extra supply has been stockpiled on land or at sea," said the agency.

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) also agrees with the IEA findings. In its monthly report released on Thursday, (the same day as the IEA report) OPEC noticed signs as well that economic activity seemed to be stabilizing with both reports forecasting oil demand growth this year between 800,000-860,000 barrels per day, roughly unchanged from last year.

However, even considering the production increase in Saudi Arabia offsetting the lack of supply from Iran, OPEC cautions that the "U.S. oil demand remains a key uncertainty to the existing demand assessment. The upcoming driving season might be affected by high retail gasoline prices and the pace of the economic recovery."

The IEA also warns, "We cannot discount the possibility that prices will remain high so long as geopolitical uncertainties remain."

All-in-all most experts say that the global oil market is very complicated and at times highly difficult to predict due to the vast number of variables to be considered for total accuracy and a completely reliable assessment.

1 of 14
Pumping Gas
Photo by Airman 1st Class Andrew Lee
R. Francis Rubio is based in Clearwater, Florida, United States of America, and is an Anchor on Allvoices.
Report Credibility
  • Clear
  • Share:
  • Share
  • Clear
  • Clear
  • Clear
  • Clear

News Stories

  • Why gas prices may have peaked

    After a relentless runup this spring, it's possible gas prices have peaked. Some analysts say they should fall along with oil prices, barring an Iran conflict or another major event. After one of the fastest and steepest runups in recent memory, it's...
  • Gas prices inch up locally, edge down nationally

      The Gazette
    Gas prices nationally actually fell last week, though not by much: The average price of a gallon of regular unregular dipped 2 cents to $3.907 in the past week, according to AAA's Daily Fuel Gauge Report . The bad news: Local prices prices are still...
  • Oil rises above $103 ahead of Iran nuclear talks

      AP Online
    Oil prices tracked a rising U.S. stock market and settled near $104 a barrel Thursday, while traders turned their attention to negotiations this weekend over Iran's nuclear program. Benchmark oil for May delivery gained 94 cents to...
  • Perceptions keep prices high, OPEC says

      United Press International
    The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Counties said oil prices were roughly 4.7 percent higher in March than they were the previous month...The forecast for global oil demand, however, was revised downward to 900,000 bpd per day. The slowing pace...
  • OPEC revises down world economic growth for '12

      Zawya Political
    The report, covering the data of the period up to the end of March, 2012, shows that US growth remains unchanged at 2.2 percent in 2012 amid a continuing improving trend. The forecast for Japan also remains at 1.8 percent with the recovery gaining...
  • Oil prices drifting lower after China GDP miss

      International Business Times
    Text Size Oil remains solidly in my predicted trading range even after a big miss on China GDP overnight. Oil is off modestly in overnight trading after data released last night showed China 's economy is growing at the slowest rate in about three...





More From Allvoices

Report Your News Got a similar story?
Add it to the network!

Or add related content to this report

Use of this site is governed by our Terms of Use Agreement and Privacy Policy.

© Allvoices, Inc. 2008-2014. All rights reserved. Powered by PulsePoint.