What causes oil prices in Wisconsin to change?
As you have no doubt learned, the price you pay for heating oil in Wisconsin can change quite a bit from year to year. Why does that happen?
It’s because the market price of oil is always tied to a variety of factors that are constantly changing. This makes it next to impossible to predict which way prices will go.
If you would like to view a long-term history of wholesale heating-oil prices in Wisconsin, please go here.
To see the U.S. Department of Energy’s outlook for crude-oil prices, please go here.
Factors that affect oil prices in Wisconsin
To give you some sense of how complicated the heating-oil-pricing equation can be, here’s a short summary of some of the major factors that contribute to it.
The price of crude oil is the most important factor in the pricing of heating oil. Like gasoline, diesel and jet fuel, heating oil is one of the many products refined from crude oil. The problem here is that crude oil is a globally traded commodity, which means that it is subject to many forces that drive its value up or down.
These forces can include:
- destructive hurricanes or winter storms that temporarily shut down major refineries
- international crises that can affect crude-oil production
Although events like these may not actually lead to fuel shortages, prices around the country—including the prices of gasoline, diesel fuel and heating oil—can all rise based on speculation in the stock market about what could happen in the coming weeks and months. This is often referred to as the fear factor.
Winter weather and seasonal demand
U.S. heating-oil prices are typically driven by the use of oil in homes in the Northeast, which consume about 90% of the heating oil used domestically. In a brutally cold or volatile winter, prices often rise. Also, on a local level, operational costs (including overtime) and even competition between dealers can result in price variation.
How your heating-oil company can help
Your full-service heating-oil company has perfected many ways to help you cut your heating costs dramatically while increasing your home comfort. Consider your Wisconsin heating-oil company your energy-saving partner, one that takes pride in delivering service with a personal touch.
During our long heating season in Wisconsin, your heating-oil company will always maintain and ensure an ample supply of fuel to make sure you stay warm and safe.
Your local heating-oil company may be able to make life easier with automatic deliveries of fuel so that you don’t have to worry about calling for deliveries or running out of fuel when you need it the most.
To take away any worries about the normal ebb and flow of oil prices, contact your heating-oil company. Many companies offer programs designed to save you money and keep your heating bills manageable—no matter what happens with world oil prices or heating-oil prices in Wisconsin.