EIA maintains 2017, 2018 ethanol production forecasts

By Erin Voegele | November 13, 2017

The U.S. Energy Information Administration recently released the November edition of its Short-Term Energy Outlook, maintaining its 2017 and 2018 ethanol production forecasts made in its October STEO.

The EIA currently predicts ethanol production will average 1.03 million barrels per day this year, increasing to 1.04 million barrels per day next year.

On a quarterly basis, ethanol production is expected to average 1.03 million barrels per day during the fourth quarter of this year. Next year, production is expected to fall to 1.02 million barrels per day during the first quarter, and increase to 1.04 million barrels per day for the second, third and fourth quarters.

The volume of ethanol blended into motor gasoline is expected to reach 940,000 barrels per day this year, increasing to 960,000 barrels per day next year.

The STEO notes that U.S. regular gasoline prices averaged $2.51 per gallon in October, down 14 cents per gallon from the average in September. The EPA predicts the average U.S. regular gasoline retail price will average $2.47 per gallon in November, falling to $2.39 gallon in December. Overall, the EIA predicts gas prices will average $2.40 per gallon this year, increasing to $2.45 per gallon next year.

The EIA’s most recent weekly ethanol production data shows production reached 1.057 million barrels per day the week ending Nov. 3, up from 1.056 million barrels per day the previous week. The EIA’s most recent monthly import data shows the U.S. imported 256,000 barrels of ethanol in August, all from Brazil. The U.S. exported 2.455 million barrels of ethanol in August, primarily to Canada, Brazil, and Oman.