According to the recent crude oil weekly update of the Energy Information Administration petroleum, crude oil stockpiles changed direction and rose by 1.5 million barrels. Propane stockpiles also rose for the first time in nineteen weeks. Could it be that the U.S has passed its winter time and the demand for heating oil will further drop in the weeks to come? In such a case oil prices in the U.S may start to come down until the driving season. Crude oil prices also didn’t move much last week and only edged down. In this week’s EIA update there is an analysis on the high gasoline exports of the U.S that didn’t seem to drive gasoline prices higher.
Here is a weekly summary for the week ending on March 16th 2012 of the U.S. oil and petroleum market:
Crude oil Stockpiles
U.S. Petroleum and crude oil stockpiles changed direction and slightly rose last week by 1.5 million barrels, or by 0.09%. For the week ending on March 16th petroleum and crude oil stockpiles reached 1,751.096 million barrels. The current oil stockpiles are below the quota from last year: the current crude oil stockpiles are 14.236 million barrels below oil stockpiles levels recorded during the parallel week in 2011.
U.S. Ending Stocks of crude oil declined by 1.1 million barrels and reached 1,042.239 million barrels.
Furthermore, U.S. Ending Stocks of Total Gasoline decreased by 0.53% compared with last week’s stocks; it reached 226.907 million barrels.
The chart below presents the developments in petroleum and oil stockpiles and WTI crude oil price between 2010 and 2012. During said years the lagged linear correlation between WTI oil price and current oil stockpiles was -0.133.
Oil imports and oil refinery inputs slightly decreased while oil production remained unchanged during last week.
The four week average of U.S. production (million of barrels a day) for the week of March 16th reached 5.819; it is 4.2% above the average production at the same week in 2011;
Crude oil imports decreased last week by 2.4% to 8.71 (for 4 week average) compared with the week of 9/3/2012; they were 2.5% above the average during the same week last year.
The crude oil refinery inputs (4 week average) reached 14.506 (million b/d), a 0.89% decrease compared with the week of 9/3/2012, and were 3.1% above the same time last year.
Below is a detailed recap of the information listed above (for the week of March 16th):
Propane stocks rose by 543 thousand barrels and reached 42,730 thousand barrels. The average residential propane price slightly increased by less than a penny but remained at $2.87 per gallon; the current price is only 1 cent higher than the rate during the same week in 2011.
Crude Oil, Gasoline and Diesel Prices for the Week Ending on March 16th
The average U.S. gasoline retail price rose by 3.8 cents to $3.87 /g, – $0.31 /g higher than the price during the same week in 2011.
The national average Diesel price also increased by two cents to $4.14/g, which is $0.24/g higher than last year’s average price at same time.
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