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Diesel prices are up for second straight week, says Energy Information Administration

By Jeff Berman, Group News Editor
July 19, 2011

Diesel prices increased for the third time in 11 weeks, according to data from the Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration (EIA).

The average price per gallon for diesel went up 2.4 cents to $3.923 per gallon, following a 4.9 cent increase last week, which marked the single largest weekly gain since the week of April 4, when prices went up 4.4 cents to $3.976 per gallon.

Prior to this recent increases diesel prices had fallen a cumulative 27.4 cents since hitting a 2011 high of $4.124 per gallon the week of May 2. And this week’s price per gallon is 20.1 cents less cumulatively since the week of May 2.

Compared to a year ago, diesel prices are up $1.024.

As diesel prices appear to be on the rise again, the price per barrel of crude oil is at $97.24 on the New York Mercantile Exchange, according to a Bloomberg report. The Bloomberg report noted that oil was up 1.4 after a government report showed that housing starts in the U.S. rose more than forecast in June to the fastest pace in five months.

Given the fluctuation—and still high prices—of diesel, shippers and carriers remain concerned about the price of diesel and oil. While many have indicated that prices at current levels are still digestible, they cautioned that could quickly change depending on how quickly prices rise with summer driving season officially here.

And even with declines in prices in recent weeks, the focus from a supply chain perspective for managing fuel price ebbs and flows—for shippers—is more on utilization and efficiency by doing things like driving empty miles out of transportation networks.

While diesel prices appear to be in check to a large degree for the time being, many industry observers maintain there is no real rhyme and reason in terms of fluctuating fuel prices.

“There has never been a period of volatility in fuel prices like there has been in the last year,” said Mike Regan, president of TranzAct Technologies and a frequent blogger for LM, in a recent interview. “That means the fact that prices are down is no indication that the prices are going to stay down or rise sharply.”

About the Author

Jeff Berman headshot
Jeff Berman
Group News Editor

Jeff Berman is Group News Editor for Logistics Management, Modern Materials Handling, and Supply Chain Management Review. Jeff works and lives in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, where he covers all aspects of the supply chain, logistics, freight transportation, and materials handling sectors on a daily basis. .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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