Sluggish demand and rising output to profit from strong oil prices lifted US inventory significantly last week. The report from the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) shows that total crude oil and petroleum products (ex. SPR) stocks dropped -2.8 mmb to 1282 mmb in the week ended February 26. Crude oil inventory jumped remarkably, by +21.6 mmb (consensus: -0.93 mmb,) to 484.6 mmb. This marks the biggest weekly increase on record. Stockpile increased in 4 out of 5 PADDs. PADD 3 (Gulf Coast) alone saw stock-build of 20.8 mmb. Cushing stock gained +0.49 mmb to 48.3 mmb. Utilization rate declined -14.5 percentage point to 68.6% while crude production gained +0.3M bpd to 10M bpd for the week. Crude oil imports jumped +1.69M bpd to 6.29M bpd in the week.
Concerning refined oil product inventories, gasoline inventory sank -13.62 mmb to 243.47 mmb as demand rallied -13.1% to 8.15M bpd. The market had anticipated a -2.3 mmb decrease in stockpile. Production rose +7.3% to 8.3M bpd while imports rose +13.9% to 0.61M bpd during the week. Distillate stockpile slumped -9.72 mmb to 143 mmb. The market had anticipated a -3.04 mmb decrease. Demand dropped -3.7% to 3.79M bpd. Production slumped -20% to 2.9 mmb while imports gained +5.9% to 0.32M bpd during the week.
A day earlier, the industry-sponsored API estimated that crude oil inventory gained +7.36 mmb. Gasoline stockpile declined -9.93 mmb, while that for distillate dropped -4.49 mmb.