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Fuel Oil price index

This post is a summary of the Fuel Oil price index developments since 2017. The price developments are expressed as a price index in US$ prices converted at current FX rates, which are the FX rates applicable at the time the price was valid. Fuel Oil price index developments are calculated from multiple separate sources of data to ensure statistical accuracy.


Further information on the Fuel Oil price index


What is fuel oil and what is it used for

Fuel oil is a liquid fuel that is used for heating and industrial purposes. It is typically made from crude oil, which is a mixture of hydrocarbons that is extracted from the ground. There are several different types of fuel oil, including:

No. 2 heating oil

This is the most common type of fuel oil and is used for heating homes and buildings. It is also known as “home heating oil” or “diesel fuel.”

No. 4 fuel oil

This type of fuel oil is used in industrial settings, such as factories and power plants. It is heavier and more viscous than No. 2 heating oil.

No. 5 and No. 6 fuel oils

These are even heavier and more viscous than No. 4 fuel oil and are used in industrial settings. They are also known as “residual fuel oils.”

Fuel oil is typically stored in tanks and is delivered to homes and businesses by truck. It is burned in a furnace or boiler to generate heat, which is then distributed through a building’s heating system. Fuel oil is an important source of energy for many countries and is used to heat homes, power vehicles, and fuel industrial processes.


How is fuel oil produced

Fuel oil is a liquid fuel that is produced from crude oil through a refining process. Crude oil is a mixture of hydrocarbons that is extracted from the ground and is composed of a variety of different types of hydrocarbons, including alkanes, cycloalkanes, and aromatic hydrocarbons.

The process of producing fuel oil begins with the separation of crude oil into different fractions based on their boiling points. This is typically done in a distillation column, where the crude oil is heated to a high temperature and the different fractions are collected at different points in the column based on their boiling points. The fuel oil fraction is collected from the bottom of the column and is typically a mixture of hydrocarbons with carbon atoms in the range of 16 to 20.

After the fuel oil fraction is collected, it is treated with hydrogen to remove impurities and improve its performance. The fuel oil is then further refined and treated to remove any remaining impurities, such as sulfur and other contaminants. The final product is a heavy, viscous liquid that is ready to be used as fuel.

There are several different types of fuel oil, including No. 2 heating oil, No. 4 fuel oil, and No. 5 and No. 6 fuel oils, which are used for a variety of purposes, including heating homes and buildings, powering industrial processes, and as a feedstock in the chemical industry.


How big is the global Fuel Oil market

The fuel oil market is a significant part of the global energy market. Fuel oil is widely used as a heating fuel, as a power source for industrial processes, and as a feedstock in the chemical industry. According to the International Energy Agency, global demand for fuel oil was approximately 3.3 million barrels per day in 2019.

The demand for fuel oil varies by region and is influenced by a number of factors, including economic growth, energy prices, and weather patterns. Some of the largest markets for fuel oil include the United States, China, and Europe, which together account for a significant portion of global demand.

In recent years, there has been a trend towards increased use of alternative fuels, such as natural gas and renewable energy sources, which has led to a decline in the demand for fuel oil. However, fuel oil remains an important energy source, particularly in the industrial and residential sectors, and is expected to continue to play a role in the global energy mix in the coming years.


Further reading


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Notes on the price-data

  • We are continually improving our data collection and processing methods and data will be updated from time to time as we improve the accuracy
  • We are working hard to upgrade the algorithm before April 1, 2023 and a further fine-tune by July 1, 2023
  • This the index trend of the price of the product group in general and not a single specification in particular
  • The data is presented in US$
  • The chart shows the price trend,  nearly always taken from many statistically-correlated sources