The Dawn of Elastic Gas Demand

July 21, 2022 By Yiannis Tsiounis Tags: AUTOMOTIVE, ENERGY

Historically, gas demand has been pretty predictable for any given time of the year, so the supply has been what mostly determined the pricing we see in the pumps. With the advent of remote working and as a result the ability to commute less, however, Americans have at least one lever to reduce the amount of gas they purchase. The other major aspect of the demand of course being leisure travel.

Have the unprecedented prices at the gas pump resulted in lower gas consumption as a result? As we see below, we are definitely experiencing signs of reduced demand, even in an environment where everyone wants to travel after 2 years of lockdowns, and the consumers are flush with cash from the pandemic stimulus checks.

Advan Miles driven index monthly

As shown in the graph above, the year over year change in miles driven is becoming negative for the first time in more than a year. July* driving is down about 4% versus last year. The trend of lower traffic than a year ago actually started in the 3rd week of June as we can see from the yearly change of weekly traffic below, with the driving habits constantly dropping throughout 2022.

Advan Miles driven index weekly

The drops are still small, but we are seeing a clear trend of Americans driving less; potentially bad news for oil companies, and good news for everyone’s wallet and the environment. And, as history has proven, the miles driven that Advan computes is highly correlated to gas prices, as per the chart below.

Advan Miles driven index vs gas price correlation

For daily miles driven data and other economic indicators across all sectors of supply and demand, delivered on a T+1 basis, feel free to contact us directly.

*data until 7/19/2022

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About Advan

Advan is the leader in the financial and real estate industries, enabling participants to analyze foot traffic data across multiple sectors, including retail, hospitality, consumer services, energy, technology, healthcare, REITS, financials and others. Advan derives its datasets using multi parameter models that analyze cellphone location data crossed with curated geofenced areas.

Top tier institutional investors spanning from quantitative hedge funds to fundamental asset managers have been the main consumers of Advan’s products.