API crude oil inventory data
The API (American Petroleum Institute) released its weekly crude oil, gasoline, and distillate inventory report yesterday. The US industry group reported that crude oil inventory rose by 2.6 MMbbls (million barrels) for the week ending November 20. Likewise, crude oil inventory at Cushing, Oklahoma, rose by 1.9 MMbbls for the same period.
EIA crude oil inventory data
The API data is the precursor to the EIA’s (U.S. Energy Information Administration) weekly petroleum status report. The EIA inventory report is scheduled for release today. Last week, the EIA reported that crude oil inventory rose marginally by 0.3 MMbbls (million barrels) to 487.3 MMbbls for the week ending November 13, 2015. Reuters surveys projected that crude oil inventory would rise by 1.2 MMbbls for the week ending November 20, 2015.
Gasoline stocks rose by 1 MMbbls for the week ending November 13, 2015. Market surveys projected gasoline inventory would rise by 0.938 MMbbls for the week ending November 20, 2015. Distillates inventories fell by 0.8 MMbbls for the week ending November 13, 2015. They are expected to have fallen by 0.417 MMbbls for the week ending November 20, 2015.
Impact on oil producers
Crude oil inventories are 28% higher than the level of 381 MMbbls recorded in 2014. They are also at their record level for this period of the year in the last 80 years. If the EIA crude oil inventory report follows API data, we could see crude oil prices fall.
Crude oil prices impact US upstream players such as Noble Energy (NBL), Murphy Oil Corporation (MUR), Marathon Oil Corporation (MRO), and Hess Corporation (HES). The uncertainty in the energy market impacts ETFs such as the Fidelity MSCI Energy Index (FENY) and the ProShares UltraShort Bloomberg Crude Oil ETF (SCO).