Surprise Build Blunts Small Rally

A surprise build reported by the API seems to be putting downward pressure on crude markets this morning.  WTI Crude is trading at $58.96, a loss of 28 cents.

Fuel is down in early trading this morning.  Diesel is trading at $1.9454, a loss of 2.0 cents.  Gasoline is trading at $1.6427, a loss of a 1.0 cent.

On Tuesday, crude prices closed slightly higher after starting the session lower.  Crude prices were influenced by reports pointing to a delay in tariffs on China.  The approaching deadline for 15% tariffs on $160 billion in Chinese goods is coming up on Sunday, but President Trump has yet to make a final decision on whether to delay tariffs.  Finally, bearish inventory news from the API blunted a small rally late yesterday.

The API’s data last night:





The API reported a surprise build for crude of 1.4 MMbbls versus an expected draw of 2.8 MMbbls.  At Cushing, stocks fell with a draw of 3.5 MMbbls.  The API reported distillates and gasoline had larger-than-expected builds.  The EIA will report numbers later this morning.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration lowered its forecasts for U.S. crude oil production for this year and next, according to the Short-Term Energy Outlook report released Tuesday. The EIA forecasts 2019 U.S. crude production of 12.25 mmbpd, down 0.3% from the November forecast. It also cut its 2020 U.S. output forecast by 0.9% to 13.18 mmbpd. Meanwhile, the agency lifted its 2019 West Texas Intermediate and Brent price forecasts by 0.5% each to $56.74 and $63.93, respectively. For 2020, it raised the WTI and Brent forecasts by 0.7% each to $55.01 and $60.51, respectively.

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