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POST DOE WRAP: Crude, gasoline rise after oil stocks decline a fifth week

HOUSTON, September 19, 2018 (PCW) -- NYMEX crude and gasoline rose Wednesday after government figures showed a fifth consecutive weekly drop in oil inventories.

As of 10:02 am CDT, October NYMEX WTI was higher by $0.69/bbl at $70.54/bbl. October gasoline rose 0.61 cpg to 201.10 cpg. October diesel decreased 0.15 cpg to 223.42 cpg.

Diesel and gasoline stocks drew, but still look well supplied; refinery runs remain high. Recent storms do not appear to have materially affected supply or demand.

Diesel stocks are above the previous year for the first time in recent memory.

Crude inventories drop 2.1 million barrels

The US Energy Information Administration statistics for the week ended September 14 showed a 2.1 million barrel decrease in commercial crude inventories to 394.1 million barrels (“3% below the five-year average” per the EIA). Inventories are at the lowest level since the week ended February 13, 2013.

Domestic crude oil production was put at 11 million b/d, up 100,000 on the week and 1.49 million higher versus the same period last year.

Imports of crude were up 433,000 b/d on the week to 7.7 million. Over the past four weeks, crude imports averaged 7.7 million b/d, up 6.9% compared with last year at this time.

Total gasoline imports were put at 561,000 b/d, down from 1.053 million last week; for the same period last year the figure was 687,000. Distillate imports were 141,000 b/d, down from 50,000 on the week; the figure for last year was 85,000 b/d (typically the US imports the greatest volume of products to the US East Coast and exports from the US Gulf Coast).

Total product demand rises 4.9%

Total product demand over the past four weeks was put at 21.4 million b/d, up by 4.9% versus the same time last year.

Total gasoline inventories (including blendstocks) were down 1.4 million barrels to 234.2 million (“8% above the five-year average”), and 18 million above last year. Gasoline demand was 9.7 million b/d over the past four weeks, up 2% from the same period last year.

Distillate stocks totaled 140.1 million barrels (“2% below the five-year average”), off 800,000 on the week, and 1.3 million above last year. Distillate demand over the past four weeks was 4 million b/d, off 0.8% compared with the same period last year.

Propane stocks rise 100,000 barrels

Propane/propylene inventories on the week were 74.8 million barrels (“12% below the five-year average”), up 100,000 on the week and down 6.1 million versus last year.

Total US refinery crude inputs on the week averaged 17.4 million b/d, down 442,000 b/d to 95.4% of capacity. In PADD 3 (the Gulf Coast) runs were up 2.1% percentage points to 96.5% of capacity.

Net exports of all products were 2.894 million b/d, up 963,000 on the week, a moderately bullish number.

The US needs to export products to keep inventories manageable: while domestic gasoline demand was put at 9.7 million b/d, total gasoline production came in at 10.270 million; distillate demand was 4 million b/d, while production was at 5.457 million.

Crude exports rise 539,000 barrels

Exports of crude oil were 1.828 million b/d, higher by 539,000 on the week; one year ago the figure was 928,000. -- Robert Sharp

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