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NGLs Week is PetroChem Wire's comprehensive summary of price trends, upstream and downstream costs, operations news and supply/demand forecasts. The report contains everything you'll need to understand what's happening in the NGL markets.

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POST DOE WRAP: NYMEX futures are mixed with crude inventory decrease

HOUSTON, August 30, 2017 (PCW) -- NYMEX crude and products futures prices were mixed early Wednesday after government figures showed again a significant decrease in crude stocks.

The dampening effects of Hurricane Harvey on crude exports was the likely reason for cheaper crude.

As of 10:06 am CDT, October NYMEX WTI was down $0.32/bbl at $46.12/bbl; October gasoline rose 6.06 cpg to 166.25 cpg; and October diesel increased 2.49 cpg to 165.58 cpg. It was the lowest level for a front-month price since August 10, 2016.

The US remains long in crude, gasoline and diesel; product exports remained robust and domestic demand is good.

Crude exports were very high, likely accounting for stock draws.

Crude inventories fall 5.4 million barrels

The US Energy Information Administration statistics for the week ending August 25 showed a 5.4 million barrel decrease in commercial crude inventories to 457.8 million barrels (“in the middle of the average range,” per the EIA). This is the 19th week in the last 22 in which inventories have decreased.

Domestic crude oil production was put at 9.530 million b/d, up 2,000 b/d for the week, but 1.042 million b/d higher versus the same period last year.

Imports of crude were off 825,000 b/d to 7.9 million b/d on the week. Over the past four weeks, crude imports averaged 8.1 million b/d, a decrease of 4.8% compared to last year at this time.

Total gasoline imports were put at 839,000 b/d, up from 555,000 b/d the previous week; for the same period last year the figure was 832,000 b/d. Distillate imports were 84,000 b/d, up from 70,000 b/d on the week; the figure for last year was 113,000 b/d (typically the US imports products to the US East Coast and exports from the US Gulf Coast).

Total product demand up 3.4%

Total product demand over the past four weeks was put at 21.2 million b/d, up 3.4% versus the same period last year.

Total gasoline inventories (including blendstocks) were unchanged at 229.9 million barrels (“near the upper limit of the average range,” per the EIA), 2.1 million barrels below last year. Demand was 9.7 million b/d over the past four weeks, up 0.2% from the same period last year.

Distillate stocks totaled 149.2 million barrels (in the upper half of the average range”), up 700,000 barrels compared with last week, and 5.6 million barrels below last year. Distillate demand over the past four weeks was 4.2 million b/d, up 11 1% compared with the same period last year.

Propane/propylene inventories on the week were 73.6 million barrels (“in the lower half of the average range”), up 1.4 million barrels on the week, but lower by 25.0 million barrels versus last year.

Total crude inputs rise 1.2%

Total US refinery crude inputs averaged 17.7 million b/d, higher by 264,000 b/d, to 96.6% of capacity, up 1.2 percentage points. In PADD III (the Gulf Coast) runs were up 0.7 percentage points to 96%.

Also, net exports of all products were put 1.916 million b/d, off 615,000 b/d million for 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 10.602 million b/d. Distillate demand was 4.2 million b/d, but production was 5.085 million b/d.

Crude exports fall 34,000 b/d

Exports of crude oil were 902,000 b/d, down from 936,000 b/d for the previous week and up from 698,000 b/d last year at this time. -- Robert Sharp

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