US crude exports hit a record monthly high in April
The total surpassed the previous record of 1.73mn b/d in October 2017. Canada was the top destination for US crude, taking in about about 342,000 b/d, followed by Italy at 248,000 b/d, and China with about 248,000 b/d.
Other countries that imported US oil in April included the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Colombia, Curacao, Denmark, France, India, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Nicaragua, Norway, Poland, Singapore, South Africa, Taiwan, Thailand and the United Arab Emirates.
US exports in recent months were buoyed by a wide spread between prices for the benchmarks Ice Brent and WTI. The August Brent-August WTI spread yesterday was $9.92/bl at closing.
The Census trade data includes several categories of oil, including crude under 25°API, crude that is 25°API or higher, and condensate derived wholly from natural gas.
Since the US lifted 40-year-old restrictions on most oil exports in December 2015, domestic crude has been exported to countries around the globe. US crude exports averaged 1.12mn b/d in 2017, up by 89pc from 2016, according to the Census data. The top two destinations for US crude in 2017 were Canada and China. China took the top spot in April 2017, October 2017 and March 2018 as Asia-Pacific has become an increasingly important market.