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Tuesday, March 03, 2015

Numbers for Thursday, March 5, 2015

Final numbers for Thursday, March 5th are in. Here's what I have for this week's price changes:

Heating and stove oils to drop by 1.34 cents a litre.
Diesel shows an added 3.7 cents a litre, and...
Gasoline shows an added 4.5 cents a litre.

I can't say that I'm not surprised that heating and stove oils didn't show more of a retreat than they are here. What I am surprised about is that the drops didn't start to hit the numbers until two days ago when they should have affected those fuels immediately after last Wednesday when they first showed a retreat!
With both Diesel and Gasoline taking a hit again this week because of scattered refinery outages in the US northeast and ongoing labour disputes, we shouldn't be surprised to find speculators taking advantage of "shortfalls" in production...all in spite of plenty of product on hand.

All Canadians should be asking themselves why we have to be so dependent upon the US markets for the pricing of a product that we produce so readily in this country. Is it time for a "Made in Canada" price to all our oil and refined commodity prices?

In the meantime, with oil showing some signs of "life" in the markets, keep your eyes to a return of smaller producers to the markets as crude prices again may make it affordable for the same small producers to enter back into the markets. My theory is that oil prices may remain low as smaller companies put product back into the markets, again weighing heavily on OPEC finances and influence.

That's it for this week! feel free to share this and "see you at the pumps!"


George Murphy
Twitter @GeorgeMurphyMHA

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Price changes for Thursday, February 26, 2015

Updated numbers for Thursday, February 26th price changes:

Heating and stove oils to add 4.08 cents a litre.
Diesel fuel to add 6.4 cents a litre, and...
Gasoline to add 1.4 cents a litre.

If there's any good news out of this, it's that after today's trading, we should be back at seeing a drop in prices to diesel and heating oils next week. Spot prices returned today to "pre-runup" levels. They retreated today by about 25 cents a US gallon. I guess the speculators decided to get out before the latest word on inventories building tomorrow.

If you have enough to go it until next week, then you might want to hold off until then. You're also a little better off if you got the phone-call in before the price is due to increase midnight tomorrow.

The Canadian dollar mostly held steady as compared to the previous session. Last week also saw the total rig count remain mostly steady, which leads me to believe that smaller producers are seeing a flattening out of prices and are getting set to "explore" again. I'll keep watching that one.

Anyway, word is to hold off again for another week if you can at all do it to see what happens with the "retreat" next week.

Pass the word!


George Murphy
Twitter @GeorgeMurphyMHA

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Price changes for Thursday, February 19, 2015

Final numbers are in for this week, and yes, increases across the board again.
Here's what I have:

Heating and stove oils show an added 3.49 cents a litre.
Diesel shows up by 4.4 cents a litre, and...
Gasoline shows another increase, by 2.6 cents a litre.

Libyan production is almost shut in again with revolution there the order of the day. That's helped increase Brent crude prices almost $7 US a barrel this week alone, and since the last price setting.
West Texas Intermediate prices are up as well, this time by $4 US as rigs come off-line from the fracking fields. There's been a steady drop in drilling over the past couple of weeks. However, keep in mind that a lot of these wells have already been drilled and are producing, so, I would expect to see continued building of overall US domestic production.

What has helped increase oil prices are some worldwide disruptions in production, in particular Libya, but also some drop in OPEC production, but only slightly. I'll have a look at the latest US inventory reports either tomorrow or Thursday when they are next published.

Keep an eye to the oil markets tomorrow (Wednesday) and see if traders are also thinking of the possibility of the US reporting further inventory building this last week!

A last point: It seems US producers are going to have another problem. Simple really, but it seems that they're actually starting to run out of room to put their oil once they get it out of the ground. It's a problem that most OPEC countries have had in a while. OPEC producers reportedly have close on 130 million barrels in "floating storage" right now. The US projection is for them to have all available storage space to be taken up as of the end of June.

We're not quite out of the woods with oil prices yet...

That's it for now!


George Murphy
Twitter @GeorgeMurphyMHA

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Price changes for Thursday, February 12, 2015

Hi to all,

Numbers are in for this Thursday's price changes. Here's what I have:

Heating and stove oils are up by four cents a litre.
Diesel prices to increase by 4.5 cents, and...
Gasoline shows an increase of 2.6 cents at the pumps.

Slightly off from what was predicted for gasoline last week, but all up just the same. Keep in mind as well that the numbers for both heating oil and Diesel may be off somewhat due to the winter blending mix…
Oil trading up all this week didn't help the situation any as the Canadian dollar lost most gains from earlier this session. Right back to where we were last week. In the meantime, over the past week, Brent crude gained about $4 US before a slight retreat today.

Most of today's drop in oil prices is directly concerned with speculators thinking that there are still worries over "over-supply" in the markets. They're anticipating that the US inventory reports out of the Energy Information Administration will show builds in overall crude oil inventory. Hopefully, gains in inventory will also be made to refined products as well to "head off" the latest increases in heating and other fuel prices next week!

That report will be out around noon our time on Wednesday. I’ll tweet the numbers they find later tomorrow, so you might want to follow me there...

That’s it for now,


George Murphy
Twitter @GeorgeMurphyMHA

Tuesday, February 03, 2015

Price changes for this week. Projections for next!

Hi to all,

Final numbers for this week's price changes are in, but I also have projected increases for next week that I'm watching. What I have done here is give you this week's increase, but on the same line, give you what I think will happen with prices for next week as well. You'll find that number at the tail end of each fuel price change I give you and in (parentheses).

Here's what I have:

Heating and stove oils show an increase of 2.45 cents a litre. (4.46c/Lt for next week projection)
Diesel shows an added 3.3 cents a litre. (5.1 cents next week)
Gasoline shows an increase of 4.5 cents a litre. (4.6 cents for next week)

These numbers I have projected for next week's price changes are based simply on the difference I have between my spot average for this week, and the spot price at market close for today. If nothing changes in the markets with refined prices from today, then these numbers should run close to what will actually happen next week.

Again, feel free to pass this around to everyone on your friends lists. Keep in mind the winter blending of diesel and heating oils. Those numbers may be off somewhat.

A strike by some US refinery workers has taken some 10 percent of refining capacity offline. That may be part reason why refined commodity prices have experienced the run-up that they have. Add to that, the effect of a lower Canadian dollar against it's US cousin, and we have the recipe for a rapid increase to Canadian consumer prices.

Both Brent crude and West Texas Intermediate crude have increased roughly $9 US a barrel over the last regulation period of seven days.

See you at the pumps!


George Murphy
Twitter @GeorgeMurphyMHA

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Price changes for Thursday, January 29, 2015

Hi to all,

It's been a rough couple of weeks, but I hope it's coming back to some form of normalcy now! It’s true what they say here in the province about coming in three’s too.

Here's what I have for price changes this week, all compliments of the Bank of Canada with its surprise change of rates that kicked the crap out of the Canadian dollar this past week:

Heating and stove oils show an increase of 1.22 cents a litre.
Diesel shows an added 1.7 cents a litre to come, and...
Gasoline shows an added 1.5 cents a litre at the pumps.

Keep in mind the winter blending of heating and diesel fuels that may throw off those numbers a little!
With the Bank of Canada's drop of interest rates last week, the Canadian dollar lost a full four cents against the US greenback. That cost Canadian consumers a rough 1.5 cents a litre at the pumps for all fuels I measure. The fact that this was a surprise move by the bank did not go by un-noticed, and the markets soon reacted. While it may make some of our exports a little cheaper, especially for raw resources, it also makes anything from outside the country, or based on outside pricing, susceptible to a change in prices. In this case, with fuels and oil being priced in the US, it's going to cost you a little more to buy them.
Hence, price increases to commodities like gas and heating oils.

By the way, did you happen to notice?...
While Costco still sold gasoline at a rough 87 cents a litre this past week, others like Irving and Ultramar in the St. John's northeast area only dropped prices in the area by the slimmest of margins. All retailers of fuel products in the province by the way, were recipients of a new allowable margin as set by the Public Utilities Board last week. New margins now sit at an "allowable" of close to 18.5 cents on any litre of fuel, rather than the previous 14.8 cents.

I'll be looking at that "allowable" process in the coming weeks to see if we can combat that, or at least have a fair shot at any hearing process that allowed this to happen!

That's it for this week!


George Murphy
Twitter @GeorgeMurphyMHA

Tuesday, January 06, 2015

Price changes for Thursday, January 8, 2015

Hi to all,

Sorry these numbers are coming so late, but it has been a necessarily busy day to say the least!

Here's what I have for this Thursday's price changes:

Heating and stove oils to drop by 2.55 cents a litre.
Diesel to drop by 4.3 cents a litre, and...
Gasoline to drop another 3.4 cents a litre.

Jet fuel continues to lose altitude, but still no word from the airlines about a break to airfares and surcharges. Jet fuel has dropped again from a June high of 86 cents to today's 52.4 cents.

I'm going to keep it short and sweet this time around as it has been a very long day, but feel free to pass this note around!


George Murphy
Twitter @GeorgeMurphyMHA