Natural gas prices ride steady ascension

 
June 20, 2010 | by Jennifer Litz
Block cheese prices perked up last week on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, averaging just above $1.39 per pound, up 2 cents from the previous week's average.   Prices closed at $1.37 per pound Monday, $1.39 per pound Tuesday, $1.40 Wednesday and Thursday and just under $1.41 Friday.      Cheese prices are up 23 percent compared with last year, when they averaged $1.13 per pound.   Wheat   Prices for wheat on the Minneapolis Grain Exchange closed at just under $5.02 per bushel last Friday, off 12 cents from the previous Friday's close of $5.14.   Wheat prices closed at just over $5.23 on Monday, $5.23 on Tuesday, $5.32 per bushel Wednesday and $5.38 on both Thursday and Friday.   Gasoline and diesel fuel   The nationwide average for regular unleaded gasoline was $2.74 per gallon June 21, according to AAA and the Oil Price Information Service, up 4 cents from the previous week.   Prices are off 2 percent from an average of $2.81 per gallon month ago and up 3 percent from an average of $2.66 per gallon this time last year. Mid-range unleaded currently averages $2.91 per gallon while premium unleaded as of June 14 stood at $3.01 per gallon.   The nationwide average price for diesel fuel stood at $2.98 per gallon June 21, up 2 cents from the previous week. Diesel prices are up 13 percent from an average of $2.63 per gallon this time last year.   Natural gas   Natural gas spot prices rose at nearly all market locations in the lower 48 States since June 9. Increases ranged between $0.01 and $1.03 per million Btu (MMBtu), continuing an upward trend that began in early May, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. The Henry Hub spot price ended the report week on June 16 at $5.13 per MMBtu, 8 percent higher than the previous Wednesday.   Pizza company stocks   Shares in Pizza Hut parent Yum! Brands Inc. closed at $42.49 on June 18, up .49 compared with the previous week's close of $42. YUM traded at a 52-week high of $44 in April 2010 and a 52-week low of $32.24 in Oct 2009.   Domino's closed at $12.85, up 18 cents compared with the previous Friday's close of $12.67. DPZ has traded as high as $16.32 in April 2010 and as low as $7.05 in Nov 2009, over the past 52 weeks.   Papa John's stock closed at $24.80, up 22 cents compared with the previous Friday's close of $24.58. PZZA traded at a 52-week high of $28.84 in May 2010 and a 52-week low of $21.44 in December 2009.   Shares in CEC Entertainment Inc., parent company of Chuck E. Cheese restaurants, closed at $39.88, up 88 cents compared with the previous week's close of $39. CEC traded at a 52-week high of $41.79 in April 2010 and a 52-week low of $24.69 in October 2009.   California Pizza Kitchen closed at $18.89 on June 18, up 27 cents from the previous week's close of $18.62. CPKI traded as high as $22.92 in April 2010 and as low as $12.29 in December 2009.   Pizza Inn closed at $1.85 on June 18, up 5 cents  from the previous week's close of $1.80. PZZI traded at a 52-week high of $2.25 in April 2010 and a 52-week low of $1.46 in July 2009.

Topics: Operations Management


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