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U.S. crude stockpiles down 2.7M barrels last week - API

Published 04/18/2023, 04:39 PM
Updated 04/18/2023, 04:47 PM
© Reuters.

By Barani Krishnan -- U.S. crude stockpiles fell back last week after an unexpected rise the previous week, petroleum trade group API said in a report Tuesday that indicated a pick up in energy demand, ostensibly from more driving amid benign spring weather.

The U.S. crude inventory balance fell by 2.675 million barrels during the week ended April 14, according to the American Petroleum Institute, or API, after a surprise build of 0.377M barrels in the prior week to April 7.

Aside from that balance, the API also noted a 0.6M barrel build at the Cushing, Oklahoma delivery point for U.S. crude.

The API had a lower stockpile print for crude despite the Biden administration reporting the release of 1.58M barrels of oil from the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve, or SPR, last week. SPR draws co-mingle with oil on the market, adding to inventories and typically giving the impression of weaker demand.

On the fuel side, the petroleum trade group reported a gasoline inventory decline of 1.0M barrels and a distillate stocks drop of 1.9M barrels.

The API data serves as a precursor to official inventory data on the same due from the U.S. Energy Information Administration, or EIA, on Wednesday.

For the week ended April 14, analysts tracked by expect the EIA to report a crude stockpile drop of 1.088M barrels versus the previous week’s surprise build of 0.597M.

On the gasoline inventory front, the EIA is expected to cite a draw of  1.276M barrels versus the previous drop of 0.331M barrels for the week to April 7. Automotive fuel gasoline is the No. 1 U.S. fuel product.

With distillate stockpiles, the EIA is expected to report a 0.927M barrel draw, against a decline of 0.606M in the prior week. Distillates are refined into heating oil, diesel for trucks, buses, trains and ships and fuel for jets.

Ahead of the API report on Tuesday, crude prices settled flat in U.S. trading.

New York-traded West Texas Intermediate crude closed the day at $80.86 per barrel, up 3 cents from Monday.

London-traded Brent, the global benchmark for crude, finished the U.S. session at $84.77 versus the previous session’s close of $84.76.

Latest comments

Mid-March was an opportunity to put some bbls back in into the reserve.  Unfortunately it wasn't done.  I am hopeful nothing happens and the reserve isn't needed.  It doesn't seem like a good idea to keep pulling from it, especially with the low level it is currently.
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