US commercial crude oil inventories, excluding those in the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, increased 1.7 million bbl during the week ended July 22 from the previous week’s total, according to the US Energy Information Administration’s Petroleum Status Report.
At 521.1 million bbl, crude inventories remain at historically high levels for this time of year. EIA last week reported a 2.3 million-bbl drop in US crude stockpiles for the week ended July 15 (OGJ Online, July 20, 2016).
Analysts surveyed by The Wall Street Journal anticipated a 1.6 million-bbl decline in crude inventories during the week ended July 22. But they expected levels of gasoline and other refined fuels to rise by a combined 500,000 bbl.
The American Petroleum Institute’s own estimate indicated an 827,000-bbl decrease in crude, a 423,000-bbl decline in gasoline, and a 292,000-bbl increase in distillate inventories.
EIA’s report shows total motor gasoline inventories increased 500,000 bbl last week, and are well above the upper limit of the average range. Finished gasoline inventories decreased while blending components inventories increased.
Distillate fuel inventories decreased 800,000 bbl, but are above the upper limit of the average range for this time of year. Propane-propylene inventories rose 2.2 million bbl, and are at the upper limit of the average range. Total commercial petroleum inventories increased 2.7 million bbl.
US crude refinery inputs during the week ended July 22 averaged 16.6 million b/d, down 277,000 b/d from the previous week’s average. Refineries operated at 92.4% of their operable capacity last week.
Gasoline production increased to 10.1 million b/d while distillate fuel production decreased to 4.9 million b/d.
US crude imports last week averaged 8.4 million b/d, up 303,000 b/d from the previous week’s average. Over the last 4 weeks, crude imports averaged 8.2 million b/d, up 8.7% from the same 4-week period last year.
Total motor gasoline imports, including both finished gasoline and gasoline blending components, averaged 869,000 b/d. Distillate fuel imports averaged 93,000 b/d.