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API Shocks With Very Large Gasoline Build

This week, the American Petroleum Institute (API) estimated the inventory draw for crude oil to be 1.077 million barrels, after analysts predicted a draw of 1.95 million barrels.

U.S. crude inventories shed a total of some 76 million barrels since the start of 2021.

In the previous week, the API reported a huge draw in oil inventories of 6.432 million barrels after analysts had predicted a smaller draw of 3.40 million barrels.

Oil prices were trading up on Tuesday in the run-up to the data release, after sinking on Monday due to demand fears stemming from the prolific spread of the Omicron variant.  WTI was trading up 1.48% to $79.39 on the day at 10:18 a.m. EDT, but up $2 per barrel on the week. Brent was trading up by 1.40% at $82.00 on the day and up $1.80 on the week.  

U.S. oil production has been on a slow but steady climb.  For the week ending December 31—the last week for which the Energy Information Administration has provided data—crude oil production in the United States was unchanged at 11.8 million bpd—an increase of 800,000 bpd since the start of the year 2021.

The API reported a huge build in gasoline inventories for the second week in a row, this time 10.86 million barrels for the week ending January 7—on top of the previous week's 7.061 million barrel build.

Distillate stocks saw an increase in inventory of 3.035 million barrels for the week, after last week's 4.340 million barrel increase. Cushing saw a 3.659 million-barrel decrease this week.

At 4:39 pm, EST, WTI was trading at $81.36, with Brent trading at $83.69.

By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com

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