Energy Prices Forecast

Economic Forecasts

Oil Prices to Cool Off This Fall

Kiplinger's latest forecast on the direction of energy prices

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GDP 2019 growth will be 2.3%; 1.8% in 2020 More »
Jobs Job gains of about 170,000 per month in '19 More »
Interest rates 10-year T-notes staying around 2% until trade war ends More »
Inflation 2.3% in ’19, up from 1.9% in ’18 More »
Business spending Up 5% in ’19 as global growth slows More »
Energy Crude trading from $50 to $55 per barrel in October More »
Housing 5.35 million existing-home sales, down 1.1% in ’19 More »
Retail sales Growing 4.5% in '19 (excluding gas and autos) More »
Trade deficit Widening 7%-8% in ’19 More »

Drivers keep getting more relief at the gas pump. The national average price of regular unleaded slipped from $2.64 per gallon a week ago to $2.61 today. That’s 17 cents lower than a month ago, and almost a quarter cheaper than a year ago. Prices may perk back up as Labor Day weekend approaches and many folks take to the roads for a final summer vacation, but otherwise they’re likely to remain modest. Diesel is also down a bit, with a national average price of $2.95 per gallon. A year ago, diesel was averaging $3.14 per gallon.

Oil prices have wobbled lately, but mostly are staying in a tight range near $55 per barrel, though they dipped as low as $51 last week on concerns about the health of the global economy. Odds are oil markets will remain volatile but lead to little overall change in price. There are plenty of factors that can spook traders any given day: weak economic data; rising tensions between the United States and Iran; other geopolitical crises in oil-producing regions; a hurricane approaching the Gulf of Mexico, where so much of America’s refining capacity is situated. Eventually, we look for WTI to trade a bit lower this fall.

Via E-mail: Energy Alerts from Kiplinger

Natural gas prices remain depressed and are unlikely to rise anytime soon. The benchmark gas futures contract recently traded at $2.19 per million British thermal units, about where it’s been and the lowest level since 2016. There is simply too much gas being produced and stored to enable higher prices. That may change if this winter ends up being unusually cold and heating demand eats into gas stockpiles. But otherwise, gas customers can expect their bills to remain fairly low.

Source: Department of Energy, Price Statistics