The U.S. Energy Department's weekly inventory release showed
that crude stockpiles increased, as imports climbed. The report
further revealed that within the 'refined products' category,
gasoline stocks rose, while distillate supplies were down from
the week-ago levels. Meanwhile, refiners scaled up their
utilization rates by 0.7%.
CONOCOPHILLIPS (COP): Free Stock Analysis
CHEVRON CORP (CVX): Free Stock Analysis
MCGRAW-HILL COS (MHP): Free Stock Analysis
TESORO CORP (TSO): Free Stock Analysis Report
VALERO ENERGY (VLO): Free Stock Analysis
EXXON MOBIL CRP (XOM): Free Stock Analysis
To read this article on Zacks.com click here.
The Energy Information Administration (EIA) Petroleum Status
Report, containing data of the previous week ending Friday,
outlines information regarding the weekly change in petroleum
inventories held and produced by the U.S., both locally and
The report provides an overview of the level of reserves and
their movements, thereby helping investors understand the
demand/supply dynamics of petroleum products. It is an indicator
of current oil prices and volatility that affect businesses of
companies engaged in the oil and refining industry, such as
Valero Energy Corp.
Analysis of the Data
The federal government's EIA report revealed that crude
inventories rose by 2.86 million barrels for the week ending
October 5, 2012, following a climb of 1.67 million barrels in the
The analysts surveyed by Platts - the energy information arm of
McGraw-Hill Companies Inc.
), had expected oil stocks to go up some 1.5 million barrels. An
uptick in the level of imports led to the stockpile build-up with
the world's biggest oil consumer even as refiners improved their
However, crude inventories at the Cushing terminal in Oklahoma -
the key delivery hub for U.S. crude futures traded on the New
York Mercantile Exchange - edged down by 140,000 barrels from the
previous week's level to 44.03 million barrels. Stocks are
currently just under the all-time high of 47.78 million barrels
reached in June.
At 369.23 million barrels, current crude supplies are 10.9% above
the year-earlier level, and exceeds the upper limit of the
average for this time of the year. The crude supply cover was up
from 24.8 days in the previous week to 25.0 days. In the year-ago
period, the supply cover was 22.5 days.
Supplies of gasoline were up for just the second time in 12 weeks
despite improvement in domestic consumption. The increase in
gasoline inventories could be attributed to rising imports and
The 1.72 million barrels gain - contrary to analyst projections
for a decline in supply level - took gasoline stockpiles up to
197.13 million barrels. However, notwithstanding this build, the
existing inventory level of the most widely used petroleum
product is still 4.5% off the year-earlier levels and is in the
lower limit of the average range.
Distillate fuel supplies (including diesel and heating oil)
dropped by 2.22 million barrels last week, much higher than
analyst expectations for a 1.5 million barrels decrease in
inventory level. The fall in distillate fuel stocks - the fifth
in as many weeks - could be attributed to stronger demand and
lower imports, partially offset by higher production.
At 118.66 million barrels, distillate supplies are 20.7% below
the year-ago level and are under the lower limit of the average
range for this time of the year.
Refinery utilization was up 0.7% from the prior week to 87.4%.
The analysts were expecting the refinery run rate to decline by