Gasoline Inventories High

According to this Bloomberg Energy story, the Energy Department reports that domestic gasoline inventories are unexpectedly high. The effect of these inventories is depression of oil prices today.

But the story doesn’t give any detail on whether or not the increased inventories are due to production increases, consumption declines, or a combination of both. I suspect it’s a combination, but an analysis would require data, econometrics, and time, the third of which constrains me away from being able to give a definitive analysis. It would be nice to know what the price elasticity of gasoline demand is like at these prices at this time of year, though.

UPDATE: The story also didn’t include the important details included in the rest of the DOE report, such as U.S. crude oil inventories are the lowest since 1975. No wonder oil prices have not fallen on the gasoline inventory news! See also this Chicago Tribune story (registration required).