Wheat, cheese prices inch up


Average block cheese prices inched up a penny to $1.73 last week on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, up from $1.72 the previous two weeks.

Cheese prices closed at $1.72 Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, $1.74 on Thursday and $1.76 Friday.


Wheat prices jumped a dime to $8.87 on the Minneapolis Grain Exchange, up from $8.77 the previous week. Wheat was as high as $9.57 in mid-September, but prices have responded to a higher than anticipated U.S. supply.

Wheat closed at $8.85 Monday, $8.62 Tuesday, $8.76 Wednesday, $8.95 Thursday and $9.19 Friday.

Gasoline and diesel fuel

A sharp decline in crude oil prices has sent gas prices down in the past month.

Today's nationwide average for regular unleaded gasoline is $3.39, down from $3.41 a week ago, according to AAA and the Oil Price Information Service.

Prices are also down from $3.66 a month ago, but remain up from this time last year, when consumers were paying $2.80 at the pump.

Mid-range unleaded dropped to $3.54 from $3.56 the previous week, while today's premium unleaded price is $3.67, down from $3.69 last week.

The nationwide average for diesel fuel is $3.79, compared to $3.82 last week. The price of diesel fuel is down from last month's $3.91 but up from this time last year when it cost $3.07.

Natural Gas

Like autumn leaves floating down to earth, natural gas prices dropped decidedly from their $4 support branch this past week. In a whirlwind of generally unsupportive market fundamentals, the Henry Hub price closed down 25 cents for the week to $3.63 per million British thermal units (MMBtu) on Oct. 5.

Pizza company stocks

The stock market dropped overall late last week, after a mixed jobs report and a European debt downgrade.

Pizza Hut parent Yum! Brands Inc. closed last week at $49.24, down from $49.39 the previous week. The company hit its 52-week high in August when shares were $56.72. Yum! traded as low as $46.40 in January.

Domino's closed last Friday at $26.63, down from $27.25 the week before. The company hit a new 52-week high in late September at $28.80. Shares remain substantially higher over this time last year when the company traded at $13.09 in October 2010.

Papa John's closed Friday at $30.29 Friday, a drop from $30.43 the previous week. The company hit its 52-week high in May at $34.27 and traded as low as $25.49 in October 2010.

CEC Entertainment Inc., parent company of Chuck E. Cheese restaurants, closed out last week at $28.79, a jump from $28.47 the previous Friday. CEC hit a new 52-week low of $27.42 two weeks ago. The company hit its 52-week high of $41.75 in July.

Pizza Inn stocks ended at $3.26 Friday, down slightly from $3.38 the previous week. Pizza Inn hit its 52-week high in July when it finished at $3.40. It traded as low as $1.83 in October 2010.

Photo provided by Geograph.

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