Crude oil prices fell today after the Energy Information Administration reported There is a substantial fuel reserve in the week to December 29.
In crude oil, the commission estimated an inventory decline of 5.5 million barrels in the last week of 2023.
That compares with a weekly inventory gain of 6.9 million barrels in the previous week, when fuel stockpiles posted mixed inventory changes with gasoline stocks falling and middle distillate inventories swelling.
A day before the EIA released its report, the American Petroleum Institute estimated that it had gained 7.4 million barrels of crude oil reserves, with more than 6 million barrels of gasoline and substantial inventories built up in medium drains.
In the final week of 2023, the EIA estimated gasoline inventories at 10.9 million barrels, down 600,000 barrels from the previous week.
Gasoline production averaged 8.8 million barrels a day last week, up from 10 million barrels a day.
In medium drains, the EIA reported an increase of 10.1 million barrels in the week to Dec. 29, compared with 800,000 barrels in the previous week.
Middle distillate production averaged 5.1 million barrels per day in the final week of December, compared with 5.1 million bpd in the previous week.
Meanwhile, oil prices are rising amid rising tensions in Libya's biggest producer, Sharara, and the Middle East. The Sharara field has been blocked by protests, while the latest in the Middle East is another attack by Yemen's Houthis on a cargo ship in the Red Sea.
Following these developments, Brent crude oil edged closer to $80 a barrel earlier today, while West Texas Intermediate rose above $70 a barrel.
Goldman Sachs said this week it expected Brent to trade between $70 and $90 a barrel, thanks to steady OPEC supply. Analysts at the bank added that geopolitical factors pose a major risk to prices.
Irina Slav for Oilprice.com