The U.S. average retail price of diesel dropped 2.1 cents to $2.544 a gallon, and oil prices regained some ground lost over the past two weeks amid indications OPEC-led production cuts could be extended for six more months.
Diesel, whose price fell in all regions, declined for the fourth consecutive week. Trucking's main fuel costs 24.7 cents more than it was a year ago, when the price was $2.297 a gallon, the Department of Energy said May 15.
The U.S. average price for regular gasoline dipped 0.3 cent to $2.369 a gallon. The cost is 12.7 cents higher than it was a year ago, DOE’s Energy Information Administration said.
It was gasoline’s third consecutive decline. Gasoline prices fell in all regions but two, the Midwest and West Coast, EIA said.
Meanwhile, output curbs that started Jan. 1 are working, but global inventories aren’t yet at the level targeted by OPEC and its allies, Saudi Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih said in Beijing alongside his Russian counterpart, Alexander Novak, Bloomberg News reported May 15.
The ministers agreed the deal should be extended through the first quarter of 2018 at the same volume of reductions.
However, an increase in Libyan output, together with a surge in North American production and signs of recovery in Nigeria, may undercut OPEC’s strategy to rebalance the market and prop up prices, Bloomberg said.
West Texas Intermediate crude futures on the New York Mercantile Exchange closed at $48.77 per barrel May 15, compared with $46.43 on May 8.
The U.S. rig count increased to 885 during the week of May 12, up eight from the week before and 479 more than a year earlier, oil-field services company Baker Hughes Inc. reported.
Baker Hughes ranks No. 14 on the Transport Topics Top 100 list of the largest private carriers in North America.