Why The U.S. Gasoline Stock Build Was Not Surprising

Robert Boslego - INO.com Contributor - Energies

The Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported that gasoline stocks had “surprisingly surged despite heavy driving on the Memorial Day weekend.” But the 3.3 million barrel build was actually not that surprising, given the development of gasoline production capacity and the relative softness of gasoline demand.

Over the past four years, the U.S. refining industry expanded its gasoline production capacity in the United States by almost one million barrels per day. In 2013, production peaked at just below 9.5 million barrels per day. Last year, production peaked at 10.3 million. And this summer production could reach 10.5 million.

Gasoline Production

Gasoline demand growth has lagged. Peak demand in 2013 was just above 9.1 million. Last summer, demand peaked at 9.6 million, an increase of about one-half million.

But in the year-to-date, gasoline demand has been 2.9% lower than over the same weeks in 2016. Retail gasoline prices dropped to low levels in the first quarter of 2016, when crude oil prices were bottoming, and that created a surge in demand that was not repeated in 2017. Continue reading "Why The U.S. Gasoline Stock Build Was Not Surprising"

The Gasoline Price Risk Factor

Robert Boslego - INO.com Contributor - Energies

While the oil market has focused on news about production cuts from OPEC and non-OPEC countries, a new oil price risk has been developing. U.S. gasoline inventories have risen to their highest level.

U.S. Gasoline Inventory

What’s even more unusual is that they have set a record high at the same time as U.S. crude oil inventories. Usually, crude oil stocks rise as product stocks drop, and vice-versa, reflecting swings in refinery utilization, which simultaneously increase the demand for crude and output of petroleum products, and vice-versa. Continue reading "The Gasoline Price Risk Factor"