Some observers of the hydrocarbon market in Canada say changing factors such as the Alberta wildfires, the slowing economy and potential supply pressures will affect gasoline prices as the long weekend heralds the start of summer.
For SIA Wealth Management’s chief market strategist, Colin Cieszynski, this May long weekend kicks off the summer driving season in Canada.
This period is usually characterized by higher demand for gasoline as people take more car trips and bring their motorcycles and sports cars out of hibernation, he observes. He adds that it’s not unusual to see gas prices go up and down on weekends, especially when they’re long.
But Colin Cieszynski points out that the price per barrel of crude oil has been drifting for some time and that there are concerns about demand as the economy scrambles in the face of higher interest rates.
Roger McKnight, chief oil analyst at En-Pro International, says the situation comes down to a question of supply and demand. In his opinion, with declining US inventories — particularly for heating oil, jet fuel and diesel fuel — there are supply pressures, while demand for all types of fuel is on the rise.
McKnight adds that with supply already falling and demand growing, prices are likely to be higher over the next couple of months, possibly reaching US$80 a barrel (C$108).