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US demand for refined products on the rise

Hydrocarbon Engineering,

Total US petroleum deliveries for March 2013 were 0.6% higher than for the same time last year, averaging 18.3 million bpd.  However, they were still at the second lowest level since 1997.

Gasoline deliveries were down 2.3% from March last year, and at their lowest level in 13 years. However, demand for residual fuel oil and other oil increased by 7.2% and 6.7% respectively, over the course of the month. Distillate deliveries increased by 5%.

Refinery input for the first three months of the year have been higher than that of a year ago, but remain low; less than 15 million bpd. Production of gasoline, distillates, jet fuel and residual fuels has been higher than demand therefore exports have been up by 1.2% to 3.1 million bpd.

Total crude oil production was up by 13.8% on March a year ago, to 7.1 million bpd. This is the highest March output in 21 years. Stocks have reached record inventory levels of 387.9 million bbl for March this year, an increase of 5.4% on March 2012 figures.

Gasoline stocks were down by 3.9% on February 2013, but up 1.1% on a year ago. Distillate stocks were at a five year low in March, down to 114.8 million bbl.

In March, total imports were at 10 million bpd, the lowest since 1998. This represents a decrease of 5.3% on March 2012 figures. Crude oil imports were also at their lowest level in 15 years.

The refinery utilisation rate for March 2013 was 83.9%. This is down 2% on the March 2012 figure.

Adapted from press release by Emma McAleavey.

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