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US crude stockpiles fall as Cushing continues to drain -EIA

U.S. crude oil stockpiles fell more-than-expected last week, with inventories at the key Cushing, Oklahoma, storage hub dropping to the lowest in over a year, while gasoline and distillate inventories rose, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday.

Crude inventories fell by 2.2 million barrels in the week to Sept 22 to 416.3 million barrels, compared with analysts’ expectations in a Reuters poll for a 320,000-barrel drop.

Crude stocks at the Cushing, Oklahoma, delivery hub for U.S. crude futures fell by 943,000 barrels in the week to just under 22 million barrels, their lowest since July 2022, the EIA said.

“All eyes are on Cushing, Oklahoma, as supplies continue to drain from that area,” said Price Futures Group analyst Phil Flynn. “There are concerns about a squeeze at the delivery time if Cushing continues to fall.”

Stockpiles at Cushing have been falling closer to historic low levels due to strong refining and export demand, prompting concerns about the quality of the remaining oil at the hub and the potential to fall below minimum operating levels.

Oil futures extended gains after the data and rose about 2%, with Brent crude LCOc1 last trading around $95.88 a barrel and U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude CLc1 trading about $92.97.

Refinery crude runs fell by 239,000 barrels per day last week, and refinery utilization rates USOIRU=ECI fell by 2.4 percentage points to 89.5% of total capacity.

Gasoline stocks rose by 1 million barrels in the week to 220.5 million barrels, the EIA said, compared with analysts’ expectations for a 120,000-barrel drop.​

Distillate stockpiles, which include diesel and heating oil, rose by 400,000 barrels in the week to 120.1 million barrels, data showed, versus forecastsfor a 1.3 million-barrel drop.

Net U.S. crude imports rose by 1.77 million bpd, the EIA said.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Stephanie Kelly, Editing by Marguerita Choy)

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