Texas Freeze; Oil Refining And Distillate Exports Drop Most Since Harvey . . .

US oil data from the US Energy Information Administration for the week ending February 19th indicated that the big drops in our oil exports and our oil refining associated with last week’s freeze off were greater than the big drops in our oil production and oil imports.

Pump Jack, Oilfield, Oil, Fuel, Industry, Petroleum

 We had a small surplus of oil left to add to our stored commercial crude supplies for the third time in the past fourteen weeks and for the 13th time in the past thirty-seven weeks. Our imports of crude oil fell by an average of 1,299,000 barrels per day to an average of 4,599,000 barrels per day, the largest drop in 32 weeks, after rising by an average of 41,000 barrels per day during the prior week. Our exports of crude oil fell by a record average of 1,548,000 barrels per day to 2,314,000 barrels per day during the week, which meant that our effective trade in oil worked out to a net import average of 2,285,000 barrels of per day during the week ending February 19th. Occurring were 249,000 more barrels per day than the net of our imports minus our exports during the prior week. Over the same period,  the production of crude oil from US wells decreased by a record 1,100,000 barrels per day to 9,700,000 barrels per day, and hence our daily supply of oil from the net of our trade in oil and from well production appears to total an average of 11,985,000 barrels per day during this reporting week… 

Meanwhile, US oil refineries reported they were processing 12,230,000 barrels of crude per day during the week ending February 19th, 2,589,000 fewer barrels per day than the amount of oil they used during the prior week, while over the same period the EIA’s surveys indicated that 184,000 barrels of oil per day were being added to the supplies of oil stored in the US….so looking at that data, this week’s crude oil figures from the EIA appear to indicate that our total working supply of oil from net imports and from oilfield production was 429,000 barrels per day less than what was added to storage plus what our oil refineries reported they used during the week….to account for that disparity between the apparent supply of oil and the apparent disposition of it, the EIA just plugged a (+429,000) barrel per day figure onto line 13 of the weekly U.S. Petroleum Balance Sheet to make the reported data for the daily supply of oil and the consumption of it balance out, essentially a fudge factor that they label in their footnotes as “unaccounted for crude oil”, thus suggesting an error or errors of that magnitude in the oil supply & demand figures we have just transcribed….however, since most everyone treats these weekly EIA figures as gospel and since these figures often drive oil pricing and hence decisions to drill or complete wells, we’ll continue to report them as published, just as they’re watched & believed to be accurate by most everyone in the industry…..(for more on how this weekly oil data is gathered, and the possible reasons for that “unaccounted for” oil, see this EIA explainer)….

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