September 12, 2018
US commercial crude stockpiles were down by 5.3 million barrels last week to 396 million barrels, according to weekly statistics released Wednesday by the Energy Information Administration (EIA).
That’s 3% below the five-year average and the first weekly estimate of inventory below 400 since February 2015.
The drop was considerably bigger than that expected by many analysts, who called for a one- or two-million barrel drop.
Crude production was also down slightly from the recent record of 11 million barrels a day to 10.9 million.
In a report released on Tuesday, the EIA lowered its forecast of oil production from 11.7- to 11.5-million barrels per day because of infrastructure problems such as pipeline shortages.
US oil exports were up to 1.8 million barrels per day, the Wednesday EIA report said, up by more than 300,000.