WTI Crude oil futures witnessed sharp gains yesterday, rallying after the US gasoline inventories fell the most on record as refineries continued to be hampered by damage from Hurricane Harvey, according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA). However, prices eased from one week highs of $49.40 per barrel and currently linger in red. MCX Crude oil futures closed up 2.20% at Rs 3160 per barrel.
Crude inventories rose 5.9 million barrels while Crude stocks at the Cushing, Oklahoma, delivery hub for US crude futures rose by 1 million barrels, EIA said. Refinery utilization rates fell by 2 percentage points to 77.7%, the lowest rate since 2008, as crude runs fell 394,000 bpd. Gasoline stocks tumbled 8.4 million barrels, the largest draw on record,EIA noted.
Meanwhile, global oil demand grew very strongly year-on-year in 2Q17, by 2.3 mb/d (2.4%), according to the latest monthly Oil Market Report from the International Energy Agency (IEA) yesterday. For 2017, the IEA has revised upwards its growth estimate to 1.6 mb/d. OECD demand growth continues to be stronger than expected, particularly in Europe and the US. Hurricanes Harvey and Irma are projected to slow US oil demand growth in 3Q17.
Global oil supply fell by 720 kb/d in August due to unplanned outages and scheduled maintenance, mainly in non-OPEC countries. The first decline in four months cut supply to 97.7 mb/d. Compared to a year ago, output was up 1.2 mb/d as non-OPEC continued to show substantial growth. Ten non-OPEC countries cooperating with production cuts achieved more than 100% compliance for the first time.
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