December 4, 2014

Fuel Prices Over Time 1979 to 2014

Home heating generally uses gas, electricity or oil.   The prices of those fuels go up at different rates.  (Or in the case of gas more recently goes down).   Lets look at how the prices have looked over the past 35 years.

I got the data from the BLS price indexes.   In the charts below I normalized the prices to 1979 = 1.0 and then adjusted from there.   The 1979 prices were :  Fuel oil was 0.728, electricity was .05 a KWH and gas was 31.8 for 100 therms.   Note the gas data only goes up to 2013.

Annual growth rates for the 34-35 year period are :

fuel oil = 4.8%
electricity = 2.9%
gas = 3.5%

Here are the charts :

(click image for full size)

You'll note that from 1979 to around 2000 that the prices generally grew at a more similar rate and then after 2000 the oil and gas prices jumped drastically.   So looking at just the most recent years :

(click image for full size)


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