Crude oil stockpiles climb by 1 million barrels

AP News
Posted: Nov 25, 2009 10:38 AM

Crude inventories and gasoline supplies rose last week, the government said Wednesday.

Crude inventories rose by 1 million barrels, or 0.3 percent, to 337.8 million barrels, which is 6.1 percent above year-ago levels, the Energy Department's Energy Information Administration said in its weekly report.

Analysts had expected a build of 1.4 million barrels for the week ended Nov. 20, according to a survey by Platts, the energy information arm of McGraw-Hill Cos.

Gasoline inventories rose by 1 million barrels, or 0.5 percent, to 210.1 million barrels. That was above analyst expectations and 4.8 percent above year-ago levels.

Demand for gasoline over the four weeks ended Nov. 20 was half a percent higher than a year earlier, averaging nearly 9 million barrels a day.

At the same time, U.S. refineries ran at 80.3 percent of total capacity on average, a rise of 0.9 percentage point from the prior week. Analysts expected capacity to build to 79.8 percent.

Inventories of distillate fuel, which include diesel and heating oil, fell by 500,000 barrels to 166.9 barrels for the week ended Nov. 20. Analysts expected distillate stocks to remain flat.

Crude prices fell 1 cent to $76.01 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.