Nick here again to bring you this week’s inventory report, but first and possibly more important, this week’s cocktail! The holiday season is over now and many of you are likely reminiscing about your tropical vacations, so here is a cocktail to help immerse you in your memories, the Blue Hawaii. Mix one up, sit back in your recliner, and relax with this week’s report.
There couldn’t possibly be another build as big as last week’s right? While not ~19 million barrels, there was another build this week as reported by the EIA, but only 8.4 million barrels. The EIA had forecasted a draw of 0.6 million this week. For those keeping track at home, the EIA has reported over 30 million barrels added to inventories over the past month.
The API is roughly in line with what the EIA had reported and forecasted. The API sized expected drop of 1.75 million barrels and reported a slightly smaller build than the EIA.
If the latest SPR data is indeed up to date, and if my calculations are correct, then the SPR released a whopping one thousand barrels of crude last week. Compared to the several million that were being released every week just a month ago, I think we can say that the SPR releases have finally come to a halt. Now we wait until it is filled back up again.
We are also back to our regularly scheduled, regularly sized, build/draw chart below on the left (top if on mobile). With large back-to-back builds, crude oil stocks continue to rise higher within that grey five-year average band. I think it would be interesting to see a five-year average band for the bar chart too, perhaps I’ll look into that and include it in a future report!
Last week’s oil prices ended on a positive note, and from there have continued to rise moderately over the week with little wavering. WTI is at $80.86 (+1.01%) and Brent is at $87.68 (+1.27%).
Natural gas’s poor month of performance is continuing this week. Its cost is down 0.72% currently and it is sitting at $3.290, not good. From December 13, 2022, to the present, just over a month, natural gas prices are down 52.6%. Weak demand is again the likely culprit here, the news of Nord Stream 1 possibly resuming transportation of gas to Germany in the coming weeks doesn’t help either.
Gasoline prices remain steady and low across the country and look to remain so barring any worldwide pandemics or Russian invasions. Gasoline stocks are entering that time of year when it has historically been very predictable as evidenced by the thin grey band over the winter months.
Gasolines’ national average price increased this week, but don’t worry too much as it was an increase of less than one cent… On the bright side, diesel got cheaper! But don’t get too excited as it was also by less than a cent… Hawaii still steadily has the most expensive gas in the country while the title for cheapest gas goes to Texas, beating out Mississippi by 1/10th of a cent. We are no longer dealing with changes in dollars but now by less than a cent!
A little bit more on diesel to round out this week’s report. Diesel stock is headed downward, but to most, this isn’t worrisome as we have already dealt with the “diesel crisis” of 2022. It’s also normal for this time of year for diesel stock to dip. There’s nothing new when it comes to propane/propylene, it’s behaving as usual when compared to the five-year range.
That’s all I have for you, thanks for tuning in and we’ll see you again next week, cheers!
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