The U.S. has scored a $4 billion windfall on sales from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR).

Emergency releases from the SPR are set to end this month as the Biden administration has sought to ease the price of gasoline for consumers. Over the release period, the administration sold 180 million barrels of crude at an average price of $96.25 per barrel, well above the current price of about $74 per barrel. For now, that translates into an almost $4 billion gain.

The administration said it will start by buying three million barrels in January to begin to replenish the strategic reserves and will be followed by additional purchases. The Energy Department called the purchases “a good deal from American taxpayers.”

Gas prices are down to 15-month lows. However, energy agency officials acknowledged that it could take months or even years to refill the SPR, with stockpiles at the lowest level in 38 years.


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