Oil Inventories – Are They Telling Us Anything?

Oil and Gas invetoriy numbers were released this moring. Inventory drawdowns in oil were heavy, but gasoline inventories, while seeing a drawdown, were not at expectations. This could mean that demand for gasoline is not there or that there was a significant build due to production. The latter would appear to be more likely as seen by the huge drawdown of crude inventories. Most probably, oil companies are gearing up for the increase in summer driving.

  • Dept of Energy reports that crude oil inventories had a draw of 1829K (consensus is a draw of 900K);
  • Gasoline inventories had a draw of 8K (consensus is a draw of 500K);
  • Distillate inventories had a build of 1836K (consensus is a build of 500K).
  • The change in the US refinery utilization rate was 1.6% (consensus is 0.00%).

From our friends over at Briefing.com
Summary of Weekly Petroleum Data for the week ending June 4
Production: U.S. crude oil refinery inputs averaged 15.2 mln bpd during the week ending June 4, 82 thousand bpd above the previous week’s average. Refineries operated at 89.1 percent of their operable capacity last week. Gasoline production decreased last week, averaging 9.1 mln bpd. Distillate fuel production increased last week, averaging 4.4 mln bpd…
Imports: U.S. crude oil imports averaged 9.5 mln bpd last week, up 80 thousand bpd from the previous week. Over the last four weeks, crude oil imports have averaged 9.7 mln bpd, 641 thousand bpd above the same four-week period last year. Total motor gasoline imports (including both finished gasoline and gasoline blending components) last week averaged 788 thousand bpd. Distillate fuel imports averaged 236 thousand bpd last week…  
Inventory: At 361.4 mln barrels, U.S. crude oil inventories are above the upper limit of the average range for this time of year. Total motor gasoline inventories remained unchanged at 219.0 mln barrels last week, and are above the upper limit of the average range. Finished gasoline inventories decreased while blending components inventories increased last week. Distillate fuel inventories increased by 1.8 mln barrels, and are above the upper boundary of the average range for this time of year. Propane/propylene inventories increased by 1.2 mln barrels last week and are in the upper half of the average range. Total commercial petroleum inventories decreased by 0.5 mln barrels last week…  
Demand: Over the last four weeks, motor gasoline demand has averaged 9.1 mln bpd, down by 1.0 percent from the same period last year. Distillate fuel demand has averaged 4.0 mln bpd over the last four weeks, up by 12.1 percent from the same period last year.