Brent Crude Oil: Price, by year
YearAvg. crude oil price,
in $US per barrel
  • Region: Worldwide
  • Time period: 1976 to 2023
  • Published: January 2024

Data Analysis and Insights

Updated: Mar 27, 2024 | Published by: Statistico

Highest Average Price Recorded in 2012

The highest average price for Brent Crude Oil was $111.63 per barrel in 2012, marking a peak in the historical data provided.

Largest Yearly Price Drop

The largest yearly price drop observed was -$46.65, indicating significant volatility in oil prices over the years.

Recent Decade's Average Price Higher Than Earlier Years

The average price over the last decade (2013-2023) was $71.79 per barrel, which is significantly higher compared to the first decade of data (1976-1986), where the average was only $25.29 per barrel.

1976 Recorded the Lowest Average Price

The lowest average price was recorded in 1976 at $12.80 per barrel, reflecting the early market conditions and lower historical prices.

Significant Price Recovery Post-2020

Following a low in 2020 with an average price of $41.96 per barrel, prices recovered notably in the subsequent years, reaching $82.49 per barrel in 2023, highlighting the market's resilience and recovery capability.

Average Price Fluctuations Over the Years

The data reveals substantial fluctuations in Brent Crude Oil prices, with a standard deviation of $30.46, indicating significant variability in oil prices over the years.

Decade of Highest Volatility Identified

The period from 2008 to 2012 experienced remarkable volatility, with prices ranging from $61.51 to $111.63 per barrel. This range includes the highest average yearly price and significant fluctuations due to global economic factors.

Trend Towards Recovery in Recent Years

After a significant drop in 2020, the subsequent years showed a trend towards recovery, with prices increasing each year up to 2023, underscoring the oil market's dynamic nature and its sensitivity to global economic and geopolitical events.

Consistent Increase in Average Prices Over Decades

A comparison between the earliest and latest data points suggests a general upward trend in average prices, from $12.80 per barrel in 1976 to $82.49 per barrel in 2023, highlighting the long-term inflationary pressures and increasing demand over the decades.

Maximum and Minimum Yearly Price Changes

The dataset showcases both the maximum yearly increase in prices at $31.79 and the maximum yearly decrease at -$46.65, illustrating the market's potential for rapid changes within a year, influenced by a variety of factors including geopolitical tensions, supply-demand imbalances, and changes in energy policy.

Frequently Asked Questions

What was the highest average price of Brent crude oil?

The highest average price of Brent crude oil was $111.63 per barrel in 2012.

Which year saw the lowest average price of Brent Crude Oil?

The year 1998 saw the lowest average price of Brent crude oil at just $12.80 per barrel.

When did the largest year-over-year price increase occur?

The largest year-over-year price increase occurred from 1998 to 1999 with an increase of about $5.10 per barrel.

What was the largest year-over-year price decrease?

A significant price drop occurred from 2014 to 2015, with the average price decreasing by around $46.65 per barrel.

Terms and Definitions

Brent Crude Oil is a type of petroleum classified as a light sweet crude, and it serves as a major benchmark price for purchases of oil worldwide. Originating from the North Sea oilfields, Brent Crude comprises Brent Blend, Forties Blend, Oseberg and Ekofisk crudes (also known as the BFOE Quotation). It's used to price two-thirds of the world's internationally traded crude oil supplies.

The annual price refers to the average price of a good, in this case, Brent Crude Oil, over the course of a calendar year. It is calculated by averaging the price at which the commodity has been traded at various international markets throughout the year, taking into account fluctuations due to supply and demand.

A benchmark is a standard or point of reference against which things, such as commodities, financial instruments, or investments, can be compared and assessed. In terms of oil, benchmarks provide a reference price for buyers and traders worldwide. Brent Crude Oil is one such benchmark, along with West Texas Intermediate (WTI) and Dubai Crude.

Light sweet crude is a type of crude oil that is notable for its low density and low sulfur content. These properties make it easier and cheaper to refine into gasoline and diesel fuel, thereby making it a valuable type of crude oil in the global market. Brent Crude is a type of light sweet crude oil.

BFOE Quotation is an acronym for Brent, Forties, Oseberg, and Ekofisk oil fields in the North Sea. The BFOE Quotation is a standardised measure used for pricing the vast majority of the world's crude oil productions, reflecting the price of these specific blends in the market.

Supply and demand is a fundamental concept in economics that represents the relationship between the quantity of a commodity that producers are willing to sell and the quantity that consumers are willing to buy. In the context of Brent Crude Oil, these principles govern its market price throughout the year - an increase in supply or decrease in demand could lead to lower prices, while decreased supply or increased demand could boost prices.

A commodity is a basic good in commerce that is interchangeable with other goods of the same type. Brent Crude Oil is a commodity, traded globally and subject to price fluctuations based on the market principles of supply, demand, and geopolitical events.

Market price refers to the economic price at which a good or service is currently selling in the market. It represents the amount a consumer is willing to pay, paired with the amount a seller is willing to accept. In oil trade, the market price is influenced by factors such as global economic conditions, supply and demand balances, and geopolitical evens among others.
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