The Department of Energy released its weekly report on the condition of petroleum inventories in the United States today.
Here are some highlights:
Crude oil inventories decreased by 2.2 million barrels to a total of 351.8 million barrels. At 351.8 million barrels, inventories are above the upper limit of the average range for this time of year. Supply at NYMEX delivery point, Cushing, Oklahoma fell slightly from 33.68 million barrels to 33.66 million barrels this week.
Gasoline inventories increased from 210.1 million barrels to 211.4 million barrels. At 211.4 million barrels, inventories are now 6.3% lower than last year. Inventory levels declined in the Midwest and West coast while they increased in the Gulf Coast and Rocky Mountain regions and were even in the East Coast with the previous week. Changes were reported as follows: the Rockies (+0.1mb); the West Coast (-0.4mb); East Coast (even at 55.0mb); the Midwest (-0.4mb), and the Gulf Coast (+1.9mb).
Distillate inventories increased by 1.7 million barrels last week to 155.7 million barrels. At 155.7.0 million barrels, inventories are now 13% lower than a year ago. Distillate inventories are 20.3 million barrels lower than their year ago level.
Refinery utilization increased from 89.1% two weeks ago to 90.3% last week. Gasoline production remained at 9.1 million barrels per day while distillate fuel production increased to 3.8 million barrels per day, a slight increase over the prior week.
Refineries in the Gulf Coast PADD operated with the highest utilization rate at 93.0% and that was an increase from 90.2% of capacity the previous week. The Rocky Mountain refiners followed with a 91.5% utilization rate increasing from 88.4% the previous week; while the Midwest recorded a 90.6% rate. The lowest rates were recorded by the West Coast PADD, 86.9%, and East Coast at 81.8%.
Production of fuel ethanol, a key ingredient in gasoline- increased from 899,000 barrels to 904,000 barrels per day. Total oil stocks in the United States have increased by 3 million barrels to 1.087 million barrels (+4.3%) over last week but remain 51.4 million barrels less than a year ago excluding the Strategic Petroleum Reserve).
The Strategic Petroleum Reserve declined by 4.8 million to 706.6 million barrels this week. SPR's peak level was 726.5 million barrels.