U.S. crude stocks fall again, gasoline inventories up -EIA

U.S. crude stocks fell for the sixth straight week as refiners ramped up output in response to rising demand, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday.

Crude inventories fell by 6.7 million barrels in the week to June 25 to 452.3 million barrels, a steeper drop than the 4.7 million barrels expected by analysts in a Reuters poll.

That drawdown came as a result of increased refining activity, with crude runs rising by 187,000 barrels per day to bring refinery utilization rates to 92.9% of total capacity, the EIA said.

“Generally the report reflects the strong reopening of the economy, very strong demand and refiners are responding,” said Phil Flynn, senior analyst at Price Futures Group.

Gasoline production rose to 9.6 million bpd, as the four-week average of product supplied came in at nearly 20 million bpd, another signal of improved U.S. demand for fuel. Product supplied, a measure of demand, is far outpacing 2020’s coronavirus-influenced slump, but is still about 4% short of 2019’s demand.

Oil prices were modestly higher on the day. U.S. crude rose 38 cents to $73.35 a barrel while Brent was up 39 cents to $75.15 a barrel.

U.S. gasoline stocks rose by 1.5 million barrels in the week to 241.6 million barrels, while analysts hae expected a 886,000-barrel drop.

Distillate stockpiles, which include diesel and heating oil, fell by 869,000 barrels versus expectations for a 486,000-barrel rise.

Net U.S. crude imports fell last week by 603,000 barrels per day, EIA said.
Source: Reuters (Reporting By David Gaffen; Editing by David Gregorio)


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