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PetroChem Wire's Daily Wire provides closing prices and a summary of the day's trading activity for US ethylene, proylene, polymers and upstream NGLs markets. Begun in 2007, its olefins and polyolefins prices serve as benchmarks for a number of physical and swap contracts that trade on the CME/NYMEX Clearport system.

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DOE WRAP: Crude falls with stock increase

HOUSTON, March 6, 2019 (PCW) -- NYMEX crude fell early Wednesday after government figures showed a substantial rise in crude inventories; products were mixed.

As of 10 am CST, April NYMEX WTI was lower by 72 cents to $55.84/bbl, April gasoline rose 0.85 cpg to 177.59 cpg, and April diesel dropped 0.53 cpg to 201.11 cpg.

Crude imports increased dramatically, but product net exports were strong. Gasoline stocks were drawn down significantly.

Crude inventories rise 7.1 million barrels

The US Energy Information Administration statistics for the week ended March 1 showed a 7.1 million barrel rise in commercial crude inventories to 452.9 million barrels (“4% above the five-year average” per the EIA).

Domestic crude oil production was put at 12.1 million b/d, unchanged for the week, and up 1.731 million versus the same period last year.

Imports of crude were up 1.084 million b/d on the week to 7 million. Over the past four weeks, crude imports averaged 6.7 million b/d, down 11.7% compared with last year at this time.

Total gasoline imports were put at 555,000 b/d, up from 473,000 last week; for the same period last year the figure was 565,000. Distillate imports were 246,000 b/d, down from 331,000 on the week; the figure for last year was 265,000 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 0.9%

Total product demand over the past four weeks was put at 20.4 million b/d, up 0.9% versus the same time last year.

Total gasoline inventories (including blendstocks) were lower by 4.2 million barrels to 250.7 million (“3% above the five-year average”), and 300,000 above last year. Gasoline demand was 8.9 million b/d over the past four weeks, off 2% from the same period last year.

Distillate stocks totaled 136 million barrels (“3% below the five-year average”), 2.4 million lower on the week, and 1.4 million below last year. Distillate demand over the past four weeks was 4.1 million b/d, up 0.3% compared with the same period last year.

Propane stocks fall 2 million barrels

Propane/propylene inventories on the week were 51.4 million barrels (“11% above the five-year average”), lower by 2 million on the week and up 10.8 million versus last year.

Total US refinery crude inputs on the week averaged 16 million b/d, higher by 100,000 b/d to 87.5% of capacity. In PADD 3 (the Gulf Coast) runs were up 0.5% percentage points to 89.6% of capacity.

Net exports of all products were 3.359 million b/d, up by 839,000 on the week, a bullish number.

The US needs to export products to keep inventories manageable: while domestic gasoline demand was put at 8.9 million b/d, total gasoline production came in at 9.852 million; distillate demand was 4.1 million b/d, production at 4.919 million.

Crude exports drop 556,000 barrels

Exports of crude oil were 2.803 million b/d, lower by 556,000 on the week; one year ago the figure was 1.498 million. -- Robert Sharp

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