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POST DOE WRAP: Crude stocks, production fall; NYMEX prices post mixed results

HOUSTON, MAY 25, 2016 (PCW) -- NYMEX crude and products futures prices were mixed early Wednesday after government figures showed a decrease in crude stocks and production.

The US remains very long in crude, gasoline and diesel. Refinery crude input volumes decreased nationwide. Gasoline and diesel demand is good, but net exports were down, perhaps significantly.

As of 9:56 am CST, July NYMEX WTI rose $0.42/bbl to $49.04/bbl, June gasoline fell 1.45 cpg to 163.99 cpg and June diesel rose 1.64 cpg to 150.51 cpg.

Crude inventories fall

The US Energy Information Administration statistics for the week ending May 20 showed a 4.2 million barrel decrease in crude inventories to 537.1 million barrels. Domestic crude oil production was put at 8.767 million b/d, down 24,000 b/d for the week and 799,000 b/d lower versus the same period last year.

This is the 14th week in the past 15 that crude production has fallen. Still, those inventories are “historically high” for this time of year, per the EIA.

Imports of crude were down 362,000 b/d to 7.3 million b/d on the week. Over the past four weeks, crude imports averaged 7.6 million b/d, an increase of 10.9% compared to last year at this time.

Total product demand over the past four weeks was put at 20.4 million b/d, up 3% versus the same period last year.

Gasoline inventories rise

Total gasoline inventories (including blendstocks) were up 2 million barrels to 240.1 million barrels (still “well above the upper limit of the average range,” per the EIA). Demand was 9.6 million b/d over the past four weeks, up 3.9% from the same period last year.

Distillate stocks fell 1.3 million barrels to 150.9 million (“well above the upper limit of the average range,” per the EIA). Distillate demand over the past four weeks was down 0.9% to 4.1 million b/d compared to the same period last year.

Propane/propylene inventories on the week were down 0.1 million barrels to 74.1 million, 0.9 million over last year.

Refinery runs down

Total US refinery inputs were 16.3 million b/d, down 92,000 b/d compared to the previous week. Inputs of crude oil nationwide to refineries on a percentage basis were down 0.8% on the week at 89.7% of capacity. In the Gulf Coast (PADD III), inputs fell 1.6 percentage points to 91.7%.

Also, net exports of all products were put at 979,000 b/d, down 519,000 b/d for the week, which is a bearish number. The US needs to export products to keep inventories manageable.

While gasoline demand was put at 9.6 million b/d, gasoline production came in at 9.866 million b/d. Distillate demand is 4.1 million b/d, but production was 4.661 million.-- Robert Sharp

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