Crude Oil Inventories Fall 0.4%, Pump Prices Below Year-Ago Price
U.S. crude oil supplies decreased 1.3 million barrels (0.4%) for the week ending Aug. 2, according to an Energy Information Administration report (link opens a PDF) released today.
After increasing a slight 0.1% the previous week, this week's report puts oil inventories back on the downward trend again, also clocking in 1.8% below year-ago levels. Although refinery inputs tapered off 72,000 barrels per day (bbpd) compared to the previous week, imports registered a sharp 254,000-bbpd drop. U.S. refineries ran at 90.9% of total capacity on average, down 0.4 percentage point from the prior week.
Gasoline inventories increased a near-negligible 0.1 million barrels after expanding 0.8 million barrels the week before. Demand for motor gasoline is up a seasonally adjusted 3.3% over the last four weeks, and supplies remain "above the upper limit of the average range."
Pump prices headed slightly lower, down $0.014 over the week to a national average of $3.632 per gallon for regular gasoline. Compared to the same time last year, consumers are paying an average $0.013 less per gallon. The national average retail price for diesel fuel decreased to $3.909 per gallon in the most recent week, $0.006 per gallon less than the previous week, but $0.059 more than a year ago.
Distillates supplies, which include diesel and heating oil, increased 0.5 million barrels, wiping clean last week's 0.5 million barrel decrease. Distillates demand is up a seasonally adjusted 11.1% over the last four weeks, and supplies remain "near the lower limit of the average range for this time of year," according to the EIA.
-- Material from The Associated Press was used in this report.
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