Crude oil inventories fell 1.4 million barrels in the May 11 week to 432.4 million, 17.0 percent below their level a year ago. Product inventories also declined, with gasoline down 3.8 million barrels to 232.0 million, 3.6 percent below last year at this time, and distillates down 0.1 million barrels to 114.9 million, 21.7 percent lower year-on-year. The crude oil draw contrasted with a weekly build of 4.9 million barrels reported Tuesday by the American Petroleum Institute (API), a private industry group. WTI prices rose about 60 cents to around $71.30 per barrel immediately following the release of the EIA report.
Refineries operated at 91.1 percent of their operable capacity during the week, up 0.7 percentage points from the prior week. Gasoline production increased, averaging 10.5 million barrels per day, as did the production of distillates, averaging 5.0 million barrels per day.
Crude oil imports rose to an average of 7.6 million barrels per day, up 278,000 barrels per day from the previous week. The 4-week average of crude oil imports declined to 8.0 million barrels per day, 4.3 percent less than in the same period last year.
Domestic crude oil production over the last 4 weeks rose to an average of 10.7 million barrels per day, 14.7 percent above the level produced last year in the same period.
Overall product demand slightly softened, with total product supplied over the last 4 weeks averaging 20.1 million barrels per day, up 1.5 percent from the same period last year. Demand for the main petroleum products also weakened, with motor gasoline supplied averaging 9.4 million barrels per day, up 0.7 percent from the same period last year and distillates supplied averaging 4.2 million barrels per day, up 3.0 percent year-on-year.