East coast gasoline stocks plummet absent Colonial

OREANDA-NEWS. September 22, 2016. East coast gasoline stocks last week plummeted by the largest volume in at least a quarter century as an outage continued on the main gasoline pipeline moving product to the region from the US Gulf coast.

US Atlantic coast gasoline inventories fell by 8.5mn bl to 55.5mn bl in the week ended 16 September, their lowest volume since 12 December, 2014, according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA). It was more than double the next-largest drop in the past ten years, in September 2010, when volumes fell by almost 4mn bl. The EIA began tracking such data in 1990.

The move single-handedly erased months of growing storage volumes that held the regional stocks millions of barrels above the ten-year average. Gasoline imports to the Atlantic coast increased by just 9,000 b/d to 514,000 b/d during the week, according to the EIA.

Volumes will likely fall again next week as crews continued work to restore Colonial Pipeline's Line 1, a 1.3mn b/d trunk line moving gasoline from refineries near Houston, Texas, through numerous fuel distribution points across the southeast to a complex in Greensboro, North Carolina.

The outage helped lift US Gulf coast gasoline inventories by 4.8mn bl to 83.7mn bl, their highest volume since 12 February. Crude throughputs at refineries in the region were steady but gasoline production in the region fell by 7pc from the previous week to 2.1mn b/d.

National gasoline inventories fell by 3.2mn bl to 225.2mn bl, their lowest since late December 2015. Volumes remained almost 3pc higher than the same week last year and almost 8pc higher than the ten-year average.

Total distillates stockpiles increased by 2.2mn bl to 164.9mn bl.

National refining rates were steady at 16.6mn b/d. Implied gasoline demand increased by 2.6pc to 9.7mn b/d, and implied ultra-low sulfur diesel (ULSD) demand increased by almost 5pc to 3.4mn b/d.