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Strong Crude Inventory Draw Sends Oil Higher

Oil prices jumped higher after the Energy Information Administration reported a draw in crude oil inventories of 6.9 million barrels for the week to September 6. A day earlier, the American Petroleum Institute estimated inventories had shed 7.23 million barrels in the reporting period.

A week earlier, the EIA said inventories had fallen by 4.8 million barrels.

As the market prepares for the next OPEC meeting later this week and many expect an extension and possibly a deepening of production cuts, prices continued to be depressed by the global economic growth fears plaguing the market and the continued rise in U.S. oil production.

The relief granted Brent and WTI by bullish reports about OPEC considering deeper cuts while industry insiders expect healthy demand has been temporary and likely to continue this way until either the trade conflict between the United States and China is resolved or a production outage in any of the less politically stable producing countries makes a dent in global supply.

In the meantime, the weekly EIA reports continue to draw the attention of traders every Wednesday, not jut in crude oil but in gasoline and distillate fuels as well.

Last week, the EIA said, gasoline inventories shed 700,000 barrels, which compared with a 2.4-million-barrel draw a week earlier. Production averaged 10.4 million bpd, versus 10.3 million bpd a week earlier.

Distillate fuel inventories increased by 2.7 million barrels last week, which compared with a decline of 2.5 million barrels a week earlier. Distillate fuel production rose to 5.3 million barrels daily, from 5.2 million bpd in the previous week.

Refineries processed 17.5 million barrels daily, compared with 17.4 million barrels daily in the last week of August.

At the time of writing, Brent crude was trading at $62.83 a barrel and West Texas Intermediate was changing hands at $57.51 a barrel, both modestly up from yesterday’s close.

By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com

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