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Oil Prices Head Lower After API Reports Crude Inventory Build

The American Petroleum Institute (API) reported a moderate build of 3.229 million barrels of United States crude oil inventories for the week ending January 23, according to the API data. Analysts had expected only a small build of 126,000 barrels in crude oil inventories.

Last week, the American Petroleum Institute (API) reported a surprise build of 4.755 million barrels of crude oil, along with a hefty increase in gasoline inventories of 4.117 million barrels.

This week, the API is reporting another build in gasoline inventories, this time of 2.692 million barrels for the week ending January 23. Analysts had expected a smaller 1.809-million-barrel build.

The WTI and Brent benchmarks both saw substantial losses on Tuesday as the reports of the market fearing increased production levels in the United States surfaced, with US oil production expected by some to rise above 10 million bpd as early as this week, with some fearing the US may drown in oil.

At 2:49pm EST, WTI was trading down 1.60% (-$1.05) at $64.51. The Brent benchmark was trading down 0.94% (-$0.65) at $68.55.

Distillate inventories saw a large decrease this week of 4.096 million barrels, compared with the forecast for much smaller decline of 1.454-million-barrels.

Inventories at the Cushing, Oklahoma, site decreased by 2.383 million barrels this week.

While US crude oil inventories are up for the week, production for week ending January 19 is also up, coming in at 9.878 million bpd, yet another new high.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration report on oil inventories is due to be released on Wednesday at 10:30. EST.

By 4:35pm EST, the WTI benchmark was trading down further at 1.82% on the day to $64.37 while Brent was trading down 1.27% on the day at $68.32.

By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com

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  • paul ellenbogen on February 02 2018 said:
    permian being the largest field with 40-50boe recoverable after saudi arabia gawwa field[spelling]where chevron is spending 4b this year and xom just announced 10b a year for the next 5 years mostly on e and p in the permian plus pxd eog and all the others should create a boom second to none starting now. With production from all over us soon to exceed 10boe should prevent runaway price increases but 70 is clearly in sight maybe higher. With the gdp running at around 3% demand for energy should continue to increase. This is very good news for drillers and all support service for oil i.e. sand companies for well completion like hclp which i own
  • Mamdouh G Salameh on January 31 2018 said:
    The nature of oil prices is that they go up and down but the trend is still very much upward.

    The EIA and the IEA start with projections for US shale oil production in 2018 and 2019 and end up treating them as a reality. My projection for US shale oil production for 2018 is 9.25 million barrel a day (mbd) made up of 5.1 mbd of shale oil and 4.15 mbd of conventional oil. My projection allows for a 5% annual depletion in US conventional oilfields.

    Shortly, oil prices will resume their surge. I am projecting that prices could go beyond $70/barrel in 2018 rising to $80/barrel by 2019. After 2019 the sky is the limit.

    Dr Mamdouh G Salameh
    International Oil Economist
    Visiting Professor of Energy Economics at ESCP Europe Business School, London
  • citymoments on January 30 2018 said:
    API is always over reporting crude inventory build every week, EIA is the only agency that is accurate and makes credible reports. Of course, I do expect EIA will report a small build this week, though you must know winter is the typical low season for Refineries, crude inventory has been down this winter every week, so even a small build this week, it still indicate a very tight supply and demand crude market. Any sell off by inexperienced oil traders will be a great opportunity to top up your position.

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