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Strong Crude, Gasoline Draw Jolts Oil Prices

The American Petroleum Institute (API) has reported a large 5.521-million-barrel draw in U.S. crude inventories, on top of the previous week's 11.486-million-barrel draw.

Analysts were expecting a smaller inventory draw of 1.429 million barrels for the week. The total number of barrels of crude oil gained so far this year is now in the red, according to API data, and there is a net draw in crude inventories since April of almost 50 million barrels.

On Monday, the Department of Energy (DoE) reported that crude oil inventories in the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) rose by another 800,000 barrels in the week ending August 28, with the SPR inventory still sitting at a near 40-year low of 350.3 million barrels. The amount being funneled into the SPR is a small portion of the hundreds of millions of barrels that were sold off out of the SPR over the last couple of years.

Oil prices were rising on Tuesday ahead of API data, with Brent trading up 1.08% at $91.01 at 2:03 p.m. ET-a $5.50 gain week over week, while WTI was trading up 1.43%, at $87.93 per barrel-a gain of more than $6 per barrel from this time last week. 

Gasoline inventories also sagged this week, falling by 5.09 million barrels, compared to last week's 1.40 million barrel build in the week prior. Gasoline inventories are roughly 5% less than the five-year average for this time of year. Distillate inventories rose by 310,000 barrels, on top of the 2.46 million barrel build in the week prior, and are 15% below the five-year average for this time of year.

By Julianne Geiger for

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Julianne Geiger

Julianne Geiger is a veteran editor, writer and researcher for, and a member of the Creative Professionals Networking Group. More

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