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DOE WRAP: Crude, products gain after oil stock draw, strong product demand

HOUSTON, December 19, 2018 (PCW) -- NYMEX crude and products were markedly higher Wednesday, after government figures showed a moderate draw in crude inventories.

As of 10:11 CST, January NYMEX WTI was higher by $1.76/bbl at $48.00/bbl; January gasoline rose 5.11 cpg to 140.16 cpg, and January diesel increased 6.87 cpg to 182.26 cpg.

Total product demand was up 4.5% on the year.

Exports of crude and products remain very good.

While commercial crude stocks fell slightly, they remain in rough parity with last year.

Product inventories were mixed: gasoline stocks were 3% higher than their 5-year average, but diesel was 11% below its 5-year average.

Crude inventories fall 500,000 barrels

The US Energy Information Administration statistics for the week ending December 14 showed a 500,000 barrel decrease in commercial crude inventories to 441.5 million barrels (“7% above the five-year average” per the EIA).

Domestic crude oil production was put at 11.6 million b/d, essentially flat on the week and up 1.811 million versus the same period last year.

Imports of crude were up 30,000 b/d on the week to 7.4 million. Over the past four weeks, crude imports averaged 7.5 million b/d, up 1.6% compared with last year at this time.

Total gasoline imports were put at 595,000 b/d, up from 525,000 last week; for the same period last year the figure was 487,000. Distillate imports were 139,000 b/d, down from 144,000 on the week; the figure for last year was 380,000 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 4.5%

Total product demand over the past four weeks was put at 21.2 million b/d, up 4.5% versus the same time last year.

Total gasoline inventories (including blendstocks) were up 1.8 million barrels to 230.1 million (“3% above the five-year average”), and 2.3 million above last year. Gasoline demand was 9.1 million b/d over the past four weeks, up 0.6% from the same period last year.

Distillate stocks totaled 119.9 million barrels (“11% below the five-year average”), off 4.2 million on the week, and 8.9 million below last year. Distillate demand over the past four weeks was 4.2 million b/d, up 6.5% compared with the same period last year.

Propane stocks fall 3.3 million barrels

Propane/propylene inventories on the week were 73.2 million barrels (“6% below the five-year average”), lower by 3.3 million on the week and up 1.9 million versus last year.

Total US refinery crude inputs on the week averaged 17.4 million b/d, down 28,000 b/d to 95.4% of capacity. In PADD 3 (the Gulf Coast) runs were up 2.2% percentage points to 97.8% of capacity.

Net exports of all products were 3.640 million b/d, up 157,000 on the week, a very bullish number.

The US needs to export products to keep inventories manageable: while domestic gasoline demand was put at 9.1 million b/d, total gasoline production came in at 10.334 million; distillate demand was 4.2 million b/d, production at 5.393 million.

Crude exports rise 51,000 barrels

Exports of crude oil were 2.325 million b/d, higher by 51,000 on the week; one year ago the figure was 1.858 million. -- Robert Sharp

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