Crude inventory rose -1.8 mmb, less than consensus of -2.1 mmb, to 342.7 mmb for the week ended July 17. Although the draw was lower than market expectation, it was much better than API's report of a +3.1 mmb gain. Cushing stock was largely flat from the prior week, according to the US Energy Department.

Concerning oil products, gasoline stockpile gained +0.81 mmb, marking the 6th consecutive weekly increase but it also signaled the pace of stock build has slowed down. Distillate inventory added +1.22 mmb to 160.5 mmb.

WTI crude oil for September delivery rebounds to 65.5 after the report. Also lifted price was better-than-expected US house price index which gained +0.9% mom in May after plunging -0.3% in the previous month. Analysts had anticipated a decline of -0.2%. In Canada, retail sales rose +1.2% in May, higher than consensus of +0.5% and -0.8% in April. The data provided support to market sentiment and hence commodity prices.

US Oil Inventory

Weekly change in inventory as of 17/07/09ActualChangeMarket ExpectationPrevious
Crude oil342.7 mmb-1.80 mmb-2.10 mmb-2.81 mmb
Gasoline215.4 mmb+0.81 mmb+0.88mmb+1.44 mmb
Distillate160.5 mmb+1.22 mmb+2.00 mmb+0.55 mmb

Comparison between API and EIA reports:

  API (Jul 17)  EIA (Jul 17) 
 ActualInventoryPrevious Forecast (using API's inventory level)Inventory
Crude oil+3.10 mmb349.9 mmb-1.20 mmb +5.52 mmb350 mmb
Gasoline+1.33 mmb213.6 mmb-0.069 mmb -0.55 mmb214 mmb
Distillate+0.15 mmb158.8 mmb+0.625 mmb -0.29 mmb159 mmb

API collects stockpile information on a voluntary basis from operators of refineries, bulk terminals and pipelines. The government requires that reports be filed with the Energy Department (EIA)for its weekly survey. Oil inventories from the API and EIA moved in the same direction for over 70% of the time, using data in the past 4 years.

Source: Bloomberg, API, EIA

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