(Adds table, more details, analysts' comments and market reaction)
------ API ------ ------ EIA ------
Stocks Change Change Stocks Change Change
11/27/09 from from 11/27/09 from from
pvs wk yr-ago pvs wk yr-ago
Crude 337.4 2.9 20.0 339.9 2.1 19.5
Distillate 168.0 1.1 37.0 165.7 -1.2 30.9
Gasoline 215.6 3.4 14.9 214.1 4.0 11.5
Heating oil 52.4 1.5 10.6 51.3 -0.3 9.5
RFG gasoline 0.8 0.1 -0.2 0.5 -0.1 -0.3
Kerosene 43.0 0.5 4.7 41.8 -0.6 3.9
Crude runs (bpd) 13.9 -0.2 -0.7 13.8 -0.1 -0.7
(percent) 80.1 -1.0 -4.8 79.7 -0.6 -4.6
(4-week average)----------------------18.5 -0.2 -0.7
NEW YORK, Dec 2 (Reuters) - U.S. crude oil inventories rose far
more than expected last week as refiners curtailed operations while
gasoline stockpiles jumped on weak demand for motor fuel, the Energy
Information Administration said in weekly data on Wednesday.
Commercial crude oil stockpiles in the United States gained 2.1
million barrels to 339.9 million barrels in the week ended Nov. 27,
EIA said. Analysts polled by Reuters this week forecast stocks had
risen by a modest 400,000 barrels.
Meanwhile, gasoline inventories were up by a whopping 4 million
barrels last week to 214.1 million barrels, EIA added, four times
the average analyst estimate of a 1 million-barrel rise.
The EIA crude and gasoline stocks builds confirmed Tuesday's
report from the American Petroleum Institute (API) trade group which
said the nation's crude oil stockpiles jumped 2.9 million barrels
while gasoline surged 3.4 million barrels higher last week.
On the NYMEX, January gasoline futures
were leading a
broad decline in energy futures after the data's release, down 5.8
cents, or 2.84 percent, at $1.9843 per gallon. January crude oil
were last down $1.62, or 2.07 percent, at $76.75 per barrel
at 11:05 a.m. (1605 GMT).
"On balance, it's a very bearish report. And the market response
confirms that ... The gasoline demand is pretty weak," said Antoine
Halff, first vice president and deputy head of research at Newedge
Group in New York.
Meanwhile, stocks of middle distillates, which include heating
oil and diesel, dropped by 1.2 million barrels to 165.7 million, EIA
said, while analysts forecast a small 300,000 barrel decline.
U.S. heating oil stocks fell 300,000 barrels to 51.3 million.
Crude runs, or demand for crude oil from domestic refiners, fell
by 127,000 barrels per day to 13.84 million bpd last week, according
to EIA. But crude oil imports fell 549,000 bpd in the week, it
"It's the same story over and over again. We are seeing lower
refinery rates because there is just no demand for crude oil from
U.S. refiners," said Mike Zarembski, senior commodities analyst at
optionsXpress in Chicago.
Refinery utilization logged a surprise drop of 0.6 percentage
point to 79.7 percent of capacity, EIA added, versus analysts
forecasts that it would be up by 0.4 percentage point.
U.S. total product demand over the past four weeks was 18.49
million bpd, down 3.2 percent from a year ago, the report added.
Gasoline output was off 159,000 bpd to 9.03 million bpd in the
week. Demand for motor fuel on the week fell to 8.943 million bpd,
down from 9.092 million in the previous week, EIA said.
"What stands out to me is that build in gasoline," said Gene
McGillian of Tradition Energy in Stamford, Connecticut.
"With refinery runs below 80 percent, you're getting a build of
4 million barrels -- that's not a healthy demand picture," the
analyst said, adding that "the one bright spot was in distillates,
which were down more than expected."
(Reporting by Haitham Haddadin with additional reporting by
Rebekah Kebede, Ed McAllister, Bruce Nichols, Gene Ramos and Janet
McGurty; editing by Marguerita Choy)
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