Total crude oil and petroleum products stocks declined -5.25 mmb to 1078.08 mmb in the week ended September 16. Crude stockpile fell -7.34 mmb to 339.05 mmb as 3 out of 5 PADDs recorded stock draws. Cushing stock slipped -0.23 mmb to 32.00 mmb. Utilization rate added +1.3% to 88.3%.

Gasoline inventory surprisingly surged +3.30 mmb to 214.08 mmb although demand +0.11% to 8.86M bpd. Imports soared +5.01% to 0.69M bpd while production fell -2.97% to 9.08M bpd. Distillate inventory slipped -0.87 mmb to 157.61 mmb as demand jumped +5.93% to 3.88M bpd. Production dropped -0.45% while imports added +2.60% during the week.

WTI crude oil prices jumped after the report. The front-month contract rose to as high as 87.99 as crude inventory plummeted more than expected. Gains were pared as broad market sentiment remained weak. Investors were also cautious ahead of the FOMC statement.

Weekly change in inventory as of 23/09/11 ActualChangeConsensusPrevious
Crude oil 340.96 mmb+1.92 mmb+2.05 mmb-6.70 mmb
Gasoline 214.87 mmb+0.79 mmb+1.20 mmb+1.94 mmb
Distillate 157.68 mmb+0.72 mmb+1.00 mmb+1.71 mmb

Comparison between API and EIA reports:

API (Sep 23) EIA (Sep 23)
ActualInventoryPreviousForecast (using API's inventory level)Inventory
Crude oil+0.57 mmb347.29 mmb+2.57 mmb+8.25 mmb347 mmb
Gasoline+4.62 mmb217.36 mmb+0.06 mmb

+3.29 mmb

217 mmb
Distillate-0.22 mmb156.98 mmb+0.08 mmb-0.62 mmb157 mmb

API collects stockpile information on a voluntary basis from operators of refineries. Data from the API and DOE have moved in the same direction 71% of the time over the past 52 weeks

Source: Bloomberg, API, EIA