WASHINGTON (Commodity Online) : World's largest oil consumer, the US increased its crude oil price forecast for 2010 on projections of a speedy global economic recovery.
In its monthly Short- Term Energy Outlook, the US Energy Department said the West Texas Intermediate oil, the US benchmark, will average $80.74 per barrel this year, up from last month's forecast of $80.06.
The estimate is 31% higher than the average price last year of $61.66 per barrel. Oil prices are forecast to climb 3.4% next year to an average $83.50, the report showed.
The estimate for next year was unchanged from last month's report.
Regular gasoline, averaged nationwide, will cost $2.92 per gallon from April through September, according to the report from the Energy Information Administration, the department's statistical arm.
The retail price is up from $2.44 a gallon last summer and is unchanged from last month's estimate.
The department trimmed its outlook for global oil consumption this year to 85.5 million barrels per day from 85.51 million last month; up 1.7% from last year's 84.04 million.
Demand will climb to 87.11 million in 2011, up 0.1 percent from last month's projection. US oil use will average 18.84 million barrels a day this year, up 150,000 barrels from last year.
This year's forecast was reduced by 50,000 barrels from the March estimate.
Demand from the 30 members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development will average 45.41 million barrels per day this year, the report showed. The forecast was cut by 70,000 barrels from last month.
OECD consumption will rise 220,000 barrels to 45.63 million barrels per day next year. Next year's estimate was down 110,000 barrels from the March report.
The OECD doesn't include developing countries such as China, India and Brazil. Consumption by non-OECD countries will rise 1.43 million barrels to 40.09 million barrels a day this year.
The forecast is up 60,000 barrels from last month. Demand in emerging economies will climb 1.39 million barrels to 41.48 million next year, the report showed.