Fuel Expenses May Generate Supply Chain Concerns

Prior to these recent gains, diesel prices sank for 12 straight weeks, falling a cumulative 50 cents during that period

By ·

Diesel prices saw gains for the seventh straight week, according to the Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration (EIA).

The price per gallon hit $4.026, driven by a 6.1 cent weekly gain, with prices rising a cumulative 31.7 cents over the last seven weeks. This marks the first time diesel prices have cracked $4 per gallon since the week of May 14, when it checked in at $4.004 per gallon.

Prior to these recent gains, diesel prices sank for 12 straight weeks, falling a cumulative 50 cents during that period.

In its recently updated short-term energy outlook, the EIA is calling for diesel prices to average $3.84 per gallon in 2012 and $3.62 in 2013 (down from previous estimates of $3.90 and $3.87, respectively), with WTI crude oil expected to hit $93.90 per barrel in 2012 and $90.25 in 2013 (down from previous estimates of $96.80 and $97.00, respectively).

Regardless of the fluctuation in diesel prices, shippers are cognizant of the impact diesel prices can have on their bottom line—for better or worse. And they continue to be proactive on that front, too, by taking steps to reduce mileage and transit lengths when possible as well as cut down on empty miles.

What’s more, shippers have repeatedly told LM they are constantly monitoring fuel prices, as they relate to freight rates and the overall costs of doing business.

And shippers continue to take steps to minimize the impact of fluctuating fuel costs. Over the years, they have maintained that this is imperative as higher diesel prices have the potential to hinder growth and increase operating costs, which will, in turn, force them to raise rates and offset the increased prices to consumers.

The price per barrel for oil was at $92.56 at press time, with the Associated Press reporting that analysts estimated that supplies of U.S. crude and gasoline likely dropped last week. The AP added that crude has hovered near $90 for the last few weeks as investors weigh weak global economic growth against possible monetary and fiscal stimulus measures.

The price per barrel of oil was at $95.97 late yesterday, which is up from the mid-$70s range as recently as late June.


About the Author

Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review magazines and web sites. Patrick is a widely-published writer and editor who has spent most of his career covering international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. You can reach him directly at [email protected]

Subscribe to Logistics Management Magazine!

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Article Topics

All Topics
Latest Whitepaper
Making TMS an Enterprise Priority
To get the most out of a TMS investment, numerous parties across the organization should lend their expertise.
Download Today!
From the February 2017 Issue
As the new administration sends waves of uncertainly through the global trade community, this could be the best time ever for shippers to build an investment case for GTM. Here are five trends you need to watch if you’re about to put these savvy systems to work
Carrier Consolidation Keeps Shippers Guessing
Getting Value from the Cloud
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
Latest Webcast
Advance your career with the fastest growing logistics certification – APICS CLTD
During this webcast presenters will give an overview of APICS and the new Certified in Logistics, Transportation and Distribution (CLTD) designation. Learn how the CLTD program can help you stay on top of current trends and advance your career.
Register Today!
EDITORS' PICKS
ASEAN Logistics: Building Collectively
While most of the world withdraws inward, Southeast Asia is practicing effective cooperation between...
2017 Rate Outlook: Will the pieces fall into place?
Trade and transport analysts see a turnaround in last year’s negative market outlook, but as...

Logistics Management’s Top Logistics News Stories 2016
From mergers and acquisitions to regulation changes, Logistics Management has compiled the most...
Making the TMS Decision: Ariens Finds Just the Right Fit
The third time is the charm for this U.S. manufacturer on the hunt for a third-party logistics (3PL)...