US crude oil imports
The EIA (U.S. Energy Information Administration) reported that US crude oil imports fell by 374,000 bpd (barrels per day) to 7,850,000 bpd from March 24–31, 2017. Imports fell 4.5% week-over-week, but rose 8.2% year-over-year. The fall in crude oil imports impacts inventories, which in turn impacts crude oil (FENY) (ERX) (BNO) prices.
US refinery demand
US refinery crude oil demand rose by 203,000 bpd to 16,429,000 bpd from March 24–31, 2017. US refinery crude oil demand rose 1.3% week-over-week, but fell 0.1% YoY (year-over-year). US refineries operated at 90.8% of their operable capacity in the week ending March 31, 2017. Refinery demand rose for the third time in four weeks. The rise in refinery demand supported crude oil (RYE) (PXI) (IEZ) prices on April 5, 2017. For more on crude oil prices, read Part 1 of this series.
US crude oil inventories
The rise in US crude oil production from March 24–31, 2017, would have likely led to the rise in inventories. The fall in US crude oil imports and rise in refinery demand for the same period could have limited the rise in inventories. A fall in exports could have contributed to the rise in inventories. Read Are US Crude Oil Exports Game Changers for the Crude Oil Market? for more on US crude oil exports. For more on US production, read the previous part of the series. For more on US crude oil inventories, read Part 2 of this series.
In the next part of this series, we’ll take a look at US gasoline prices and how they impact crude oil prices.