by Irina Slav
Summer driving season: it’s the season to be traveling, what with long weekends, annual leaves and short getaways from the banalities of everyday life at the office. The summer season in the Northern Hemisphere is when demand for crude oil invariably picks up, because fuel consumption increases. In Europe, there’s greater hunger for diesel and in the U.S. there’s a pickup in gasoline demand. Usually.
This year’s driving season, however, is shaping up to be a very disappointing exception to the usual seasonal patterns in fuel demand. People are not traveling now as much as analysts expected back in May. Back then, the outlook was rosy, with some analysts forecasting an oil rebound to as much as $60 a barrel. Instead, we got WTI slipping into bear market.