According to Platts Energy Information, an analysis by Standard & Poor's global cFlow on Monday showed that US refinery stocks may have dropped by 2.7 million barrels last week as refineries have maintained high production.
Platts Energy analysts predict that refinery production last week will remain at 96.4%, in line with production capacity. Data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration show that as of the week of August 2, the U.S. * 'S net daily output was 17.8 million barrels, a year-on-year increase higher than the 5-year average.
Refinery profit margins have declined this month, but it is still enough to encourage refiners to maintain high operations. Platts data shows that so far in August, USGC Mars coking margins averaged $ 8.48 / barrel and WTI margins averaged $ 11.87 / barrel.
2.7 million barrels of * supply will bring US * inventory to 436.2 million barrels, about 2.5% higher than the five-year average. * Inventories usually fall at this time of the year, entering the refinery maintenance season in the fall, which is expected to peak in October.
Chongzuo diesel wholesale price EIA data last week showed that U.S. * inventories unexpectedly increased in the week ending August 2 due to slowing exports. Increasing inventories pushed ** lower despite oil prices rebounding last weekend.
Nonetheless, concerns about a slowing economy have recently weighed on **, and although geopolitical tensions still support **, if ** inventories are contrary to expectations, ** may fall again due to the lack of new bullish news.
The slowdown in US exports has left bulls worried. Last week's US exports to Asia fell to 4.74 million barrels, down from 5.17 million barrels in the week ending August 2 and 10.2 million barrels in the week ending July 5; exports to Europe, Latin America, and Canada * It has also declined. Despite a decline in exports last week, base load exports to Europe are expected to remain stable, and the United States exports light, low-sulfur * to Northwest Europe and the Mediterranean * will face arbitrage.
Although it appears that arbitrage trading into Asia has opened up, the supply of very large-scale tankers has tightened, and exports to Asia rely on ship ballast tanks. Currently, the United States ** port capable of fully loading VLCC is the Louisiana Offshore Oil Port (LOOP), and according to cFlow data, the port has not exported in the past four weeks *.
Platts analysts expect that US gasoline inventories fell by an average of 700,000 barrels last week. Analysts had expected distillate stocks to increase by 870,000 barrels. As refiners maintain high production, gasoline and distillate production should remain strong. The low unemployment rate in the United States should help boost gasoline demand. At the same time, retail gasoline prices should also decline year-on-year. However, a slowdown in the industrial sector may drive distillate demand. The decline in container shipments caused by international trade tensions, coupled with the slowdown in drilling activities, indicate a decline in distillate consumption.