MOSCOW (MRC) -- US crude oil and gasoline inventories rose last week, alleviating a bit of the market's concerns about supply, though fuel demand surged close to record highs, reported Reuters with reference to the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday.
Crude inventories rose by 2.4 million barrels in the week to Jan. 21 to 416.2 million barrels, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 728,000-barrel drop.
Gasoline stocks rose by 1.3 million barrels last week to 247.9 million barrels, the EIA said, the most since February of 2021. Analysts were expecting a 2.5 million-barrel rise in stocks. Gasoline stocks generally build during the winter, a less busy season for driving.
Overall product supplied - a measure of demand - surged again, putting the four-week moving average at 21.2 million barrels per day, ahead of pre-pandemic trends. The increases have been led by consumption of distillates like diesel, as gasoline use has fallen off modestly in recent weeks.
Distillate stockpiles, which include diesel and heating oil, fell by 2.8 million barrels in the week versus expectations for a 1.3 million-barrel drop.
Refinery crude runs rose by 44,000 bpd last week, and utilization rates fell by 0.4 percentage point in the week.
Crude stocks at the Cushing, Oklahoma, delivery hub for US crude futures fell by 1.8 million barrels in the last week, the EIA said.
As MRC wrote previously, oil supply will soon overtake demand as some producers are set to pump at or above all-time highs, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said last Wednesday, while demand holds up despite the spread of the Omicron coronavirus variant.
We remind that lobal oil refining capacity fell for the first time in 30 years last year, as new capacity was outweighed by closures, said the International Energy Agency's (IEA) in its monthly oil market report on Wednesday. Refining capacity was down by 730,000 bpd in 2021, the IEA said, but net additions were expected to amount to 1.2 MMbpd in 2022.