Oil Storage Crisis Deepens As API Reports Very Large Crude Inventory Build

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By Julianne Geiger

The American Petroleum Institute (API) estimated on Tuesday another large crude oil inventory build of 9.978 million barrels for the week ending April 24 as the demand destruction continues and storage space nears its upper limits.

Today’s inventory build was expected to be slightly larger, at 10.619 million barrels.

In the previous week, the API estimated a large build in crude oil inventories of 13.226 million barrels, while the EIA’s estimates were for a build of 15 million barrels for that week.

Oil prices were mixed on Tuesday afternoon prior to the API’s data release, With WTI trading slightly down and Brent slightly up.

At 4:03 pm EDT on Tuesday the WTI benchmark was trading down on the day by $0.08 (-0.63%) at $12.70—down roughly $0.40 per barrel week over week. The price of a Brent barrel was trading up on Tuesday, by $0.57 (+2.85%), at $20.56—up roughly $0.70 week on week.

The API reported a draw of 1.108 million barrels of gasoline for week ending April 24, after last week’s 3.435-million-barrel build. This week’s build compares to analyst expectations for a 2.527-million-barrel build for the week.

Distillate inventories were up by 5.462 million barrels for the week, compared to last week’s 7.639-barrel build, while Cushing inventories saw a gain of 2.486 million barrels.

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US crude oil production as estimated by the Energy Information Administration showed that production for the week ending April 17 fell to 12.2 million bpd—down 100,000 bpd for the week, and down 900,000 from its high.

Crude Oil

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