Will US Crude Oil Inventories Fall for the Ninth Week?

According to the Financial Times, the sharp fall in oil prices was due to the Energy Information Administration (EIA) reporting U.S. inventories had increased 3.3 million barrels to 513.2 million barrels, countering estimates of a decline of similar size in its weekly report.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures CLc1 were at $48.14 per barrel, down 5 cents from the previous close, and 6 percent below their May 25 open.

The Energy Information Administration (EIA) increased its U.S. output estimates with an increase in production to 9.3 million bpd expected for 2017 while the EIA also projected that 2017 output could reach 10 million bpd.

Thursday's drop extended losses after a 5.1 percent plunge in the previous session, sparked by a bearish report on US stockpiles of crude and gasoline stockpiles from the Energy Information Administration.

USA inventories of crude oil and gasoline surprisingly rose last week as refinery runs declined and exports fell, official data showed on Wednesday.

In the United States, official inventory data from the EIA will be published on Wednesday, with expectations of a fall in stockpiles.

"The market is still awash in oil, and it's waiting to see more concrete signs of global oil inventories declining", said Andy Lipow, an oil market analyst in Houston.

OECD liquid fuels consumption will increase from 46.85 million barrels per day in 2016 to 47.14 million barrels per day in 2017 and 47.5 million barrels per day in 2018, the report said.

The price for Brent crude oil was down 1 percent about 15 minutes before the start of trading in NY to $49.64 per barrel. Crude stockpiles at the Cushing oil hub in Oklahoma fell 1.4M barrels last week. The nations exports to Indian buyers in June were set to decline by just over 3 million barrels, and supplies to Japan will drop by just under 1 million barrels this month, according to a Reuters' source.

But analysts saw a risk that rivalries between OPEC members could weaken the production cut agreement.

Crude oil prices remained under pressure in Wednesday trading as geopolitical issues in the Persian Gulf lead to questions about OPEC unity.

"Flagging gasoline demand continues to bedevil the market". Some were already concerned about rising production from Libya and Nigeria, which are exempt from the agreement.

  • Zachary Reyes