CHICAGO – Block cheese prices on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange were relatively stable last week, averaging slightly under $1.29 per pound for the trading week ended April 3, up 2 cents from an average of $1.27 per pound the previous week.
Block cheese prices closed at $1.29 per pound Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, and closed at $1.28 per pound Thursday and Friday.
Prices are off 52 cents, or 29 percent, compared with this time last year, when block cheese averaged $1.81 per pound.
Wheat prices for May delivery rose steadily last week, closing at just above $6.71 per bushel Friday on the Minneapolis Grain Exchange. Prices had closed at just above $6.11 per bushel Monday, just above $6.39 per bushel Tuesday, just above 6.43 per bushel Wednesday and just above $6.59 per bushel Thursday.
Gasoline and diesel fuel
The nationwide average for regular unleaded gasoline was $2.04 per gallon April 6, according to AAA and the Oil Price Information Service, off a penny from the previous week.
Prices are up 5 percent from an average of $1.95 per gallon a month ago and off 39 percent from an average of $3.32 per gallon this time last year. Mid-range unleaded averaged $2.16 per gallon while premium unleaded stood at $2.24 per gallon.
The nationwide average price for diesel fuel stood at $2.25 per gallon April 6, off a penny from last week. Diesel prices are off 44 percent from an average of $4.02 per gallon this time last year.
Spot prices fell at most trading locations last report week, according to the Energy Information Administration.
The natural gas spot price at the Henry Hub fell to $3.56 per MMBtu by April 1, a nearly 14 percent decline since the previous Wednesday.
Prices in the Northeast stood at $4.20 per MMBtu on April 1, off 44 cents compared with $4.64 the previous week.
Pizza company stocks
Shares in Pizza Hut parent Yum! Brands Inc opened at $29.79 on April, up 5 percent compared with last Monday's open of $28.26. YUM traded at a 52-week high of $41.73 in May 2008 and a 52-week low of $21.50 in November 2008.
Domino's opened at $6.97, up 7 percent compared with last week's open of $6.53. Over the past 52 weeks, DPZ has traded as high as $14.37 in April 2008 and as low as $2.61 in November 2008.
Papa John's stock opened at $23.69, up 45 cents compared with last Monday's open of $23.24. PZZA traded at a 52-week high of $30.68 in September 2008 and a 52-week low of $12.78 in November 2008.
Shares in CEC Entertainment Inc., parent company of Chuck E. Cheese restaurants, opened at $28.00, up 16 percent compared with last Monday's open of $24.18. CEC traded at a 52-week high of $39.59 in May 2008 and a 52-week low of $12.96 in November 2008.
California Pizza Kitchen opened at $14.19 on April 6, up 90 cents from last week's open of $13.29. Over the past 52 weeks, CPKI has traded as high as $16.91 in May 2008 and as low as $5.24 in November 2008.
Pizza Inn opened at $1.07, up 5 cents compared with last Monday's open of $1.02. PZZI traded at a 52-week high of $3.00 in April 2008 and a 52-week low of $1.00 in April 2009.