HOUSTON, May 8 (Xinhua) -- U.S. crude oil and liquid fuel consumption continued to display weakness in the first quarter this year, falling by 670 barrels per day, or 3.5 percent, from the same period last year, according to a report released by the U.S. Energy Administration Agency (EIA) on Tuesday.
Total U.S. fuel consumption fell 340 thousand bbb/d, or 1.8 percent, last year, with motor gasoline consumption accounting for the bulk of that decline, shrinking by 260, the EIA said in its monthly short-term energy outlook report.
In the first quarter this year, U.S. motor gasoline consumption declined by 150 thousand barrels a day, as Americans drivers felt the pressure of higher retail gasoline prices.
Distillate fuel consumption also shrank by 150 thousand bbl/d, largely due to unusually warm weather, the EIA report said.
For the rest of 2012, EIA expected more moderate year-over-year declines in motor gasoline consumption, averaging about 30 thousand bbl/d.
Despite assumed growth in U.S. real disposable income of 1.9 percent next year, the EIA forecast that motor gasoline consumption will continue to decline by 30 thousand bbl/d in 2013.
The estimations reflect "high gasoline prices, slowing growth in the driving-age population, and the improving average fuel economy of new vehicles," the EIA said.