Crude oil inventories rose sharply by 8.0 million barrels in the September 28 week to 404.0 million, 13.1 percent below their level a year ago. Product inventories declined, with gasoline down 0.5 million barrels to 235.2 million, up 7.4 percent year-on-year, and distillates down 1.8 million barrels to 136.1 million, 0.5 percent higher than last year at this time. The large increase in crude oil inventories dwarfed the build of 0.9 million barrels reported Tuesday by the American Petroleum Institute, a private industry group, which also reported declines of 1.7 million barrels for gasoline and 1.2 million barrels for distillates. WTI prices fell about 50 cents to around $74.35 per barrel immediately following the release of the EIA data but quickly rebounded to trade above pre-release levels.
Refineries operated at 90.4 percent of their operable capacity, unchanged from the prior week. But production increased, averaging 10.0 million barrels per day for gasoline 5.0 million barrels per day for distillates.
Crude oil imports rose by 163,000 barrels per day from the prior week to an average of 8.0 million barrels per day. Over the last 4 weeks, crude oil imports averaged 7.8 million barrels day, 10.2 percent more than in the same period last year.
Domestic crude oil production remained stable at an average 11 million barrels over the last 4 weeks, 16.1 percent more than last year at this time.
Overall product demand continued to soften, with total product supplied over the last 4 weeks averaging 20.5 million barrels per day, up 1.1 percent from the same period last year. Softness was most pronounced in the main products, with supplied gasoline averaging 9.3 million barrels per day, down 1.5 percent year-on-year, and supplied distillates averaging 3.9 million barrels per day, down 2.9 percent from last year.