• 4 minutes Trump will meet with executives in the energy industry to discuss the impact of COVID-19
  • 8 minutes Charts of COVID-19 Fatality Rate by Age and Sex
  • 11 minutes Why Trump Is Right to Re-Open the Economy
  • 13 minutes Its going to be an oil bloodbath
  • 14 mins US Shale Resilience: Oil Industry Experts Say Shale Will Rise Again
  • 23 mins While China was covering up Covid-19 it went on an international buying spree for ventilators and masks. From Jan 7th until the end of February China bought 2.2 Billion masks !
  • 2 hours Marine based energy generation
  • 16 hours What If ‘We’d Adopted A More Conventional Response To This Epidemic?’
  • 3 hours China Takes Axe To Alternative Energy Funding, Slashing Subsidies For Solar And Wind
  • 1 day The Most Annoying Person You Have Encountered During Lockdown
  • 6 hours Real Death Toll In CCP Virus May Be 12X Official Toll
  • 3 hours Which producers will shut in first?
  • 1 hour Today 127 new cases in US, 99 in China, 778 in Italy
  • 24 hours Trafigura CEO Weir says, "We will see 30% to 35% drop in demand". That amounts to 35mm bbls/day glut ! OPEC+ 10 mm cut won't fix it. It's a DEMAND problem.
  • 1 day Cpt Lauren Dowsett
  • 12 hours TRUMP pushing Hydroxychloroquine + Zpak therapy forward despite FDA conservative approach. As he reasons, "What have we got to lose ?"
Irina Slav

Irina Slav

Irina is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing on the oil and gas industry.

More Info

Premium Content

Oil Prices Fall As EIA Confirms Inventory Build

After a surprise 5.32-million-barrel inventory build reported by the American Petroleum Institute (API) weighed on oil prices yesterday, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) is reporting a build of 1.6 million barrels for the week ending March 23.

The markets, which have not had a chance to react to the EIA report as of the time of writing, could ease their downward trend given the nearly 4-million difference in build in the official figures.

However, they could also take this as confirmation of a reversal of expectations. Heading into Tuesday’s API data, expectations were for a draw of around 430 million barrels.

The authority said refineries processed 16.8 million bpd of crude in the reporting period, unchanged from a week earlier. Gasoline production averaged 10.3 million bpd, compared with 9.9 million bpd a week earlier, and distillate output averaged 4.8 million bpd last week, versus 4.5 million bpd a week earlier.

Gasoline inventories, the EIA said, fell by 3.5 million barrels in the week to March 23. In the week before that, gasoline inventories marked a decline of 1.7 million barrels. Distillate inventories last week shed 2.1 million barrels, compared with a decline of 2 million barrels in the prior week.

This week’s inventory data comes amid increasingly bullish talk from key analysts who view Big Oil as entering its “Golden Age”: a ‘restraint’ phase of backwardation, cost deflation and consolidation. The bullish mood is strengthened by persistent tensions in the Middle East with a focus on the possible reintroduction of U.S. sanctions against Iran.

One further factor that has supported prices this week was an announcement from OPEC that it plans to extend its cooperation with Russia over the next ten to twenty years. This has been taken to mean that the production cuts applied by the cartel, Russia and ten other producers could continue beyond the medium term. However, nothing is certain, especially with higher prices. Related: OPEC Scrambles To Justify Output Cuts

On the other hand, as evidenced on numerous occasions, one surprise build report from the API is enough to push prices down and this is exactly what happened yesterday, when API’s latest estimate dragged Brent back below US$70 a barrel, after a combination of tailwinds had pushed the international benchmark above this threshold for the first time in three months.

EIA’s figures may have the same effect later today. At the time of writing Brent was trading at US$68.78 a barrel and WTI was changing hands at US$64.44, both down by around a percentage point from yesterday’s close.

By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com

More Top Reads From Oilprice.com:


Download The Free Oilprice App Today

Back to homepage






Leave a comment
  • Kr55 on March 28 2018 said:
    any that pay attention saw an anomaly with imports coming. Were up 1M/day. Will be made up to average out back to normal levels in the future weeks.

    But, this market is stained with speculators as usual. Not sure any real progress will be made until the shadow of speculation clears a bit.

Leave a comment




Oilprice - The No. 1 Source for Oil & Energy News