Source: Houston Chronicle

The nation’s supplies of commercial crude oil spiked by 5.7 million barrels last week, but declines in refined products caused overall petroleum supplies to fall for an unprecedented fourth consecutive week.

Source: Houston Chronicle

Crude oil prices dipped a bit Wednesday morning on the more bearish crude inventories increase, but the offsetting declines in other petroleum supplies kept oil prices from falling more substantially. The U.S. benchmark for oil is hovering just above $55 a barrel.

Gasoline supplies dipped by 3 million barrels, jet fuel fell by 800,000 barrels and distillate fuel oil used to make diesel and heating oil declined by another 1 million barrels. Further declines in other oils and propane and propylene supplies contributed to total commercial petroleum supplies falling by 2.2 million barrels, according to the U.S. Energy Department.

It’s the first time that total petroleum supplies have fallen for four straight weeks, showing that the United States is getting closer to becoming a net petroleum exporter.

U.S. crude production remains at an estimated all-time high of 12.6 million barrels a day, of which more than 3.3 million barrels daily are exported. However, the U.S. still imports twice as much unrefined crude oil as it ships out in order to feed heavier-grade crudes to the bevy of refineries along the Texas and Louisiana Gulf Coast.



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