US crude oil inventories have been building rather stoically in 2023, specifically at the Cushing WTI futures Hub. There was a build +4.267Mbbls this week, following +3.646Mbbls and +2.511Mbbls the prior weeks. Gasoline also had another sizeable build of +1.763Mbbls following +3.483Mbbls and +4.114Mbbls the prior weeks. For crude EIA reported a build of +533Kbbls much lower than the +8.408Mbbls and +18.161Mbbls the weeks prior.
Higher futures prices suggest traders appear to be ignoring large US builds and have chosen hope with China opening up rather than negative morose from China’s economic implosion and the Central Bank maelstrom. Europe appears to be readdressing energy dependance on Russia since the Ukraine invasion has been a slow and indecisive one by Germany. President Vladimir Putin said Russia would immediately stop oil supply to countries that support the G7 members price cap on exports of Russian oil.
Markets will focus more acutely over the coming weeks on the effects of the EU’s sanctions on Russian refined products to be implemented Feb. 5. The ban follows a similar price cap on crude shipments introduced last year. European countries have pushed to lower the crude price cap ($60) on Moscow even further, but the Biden administration said it was inclined to oppose the move.
Since the cap, if not before Russian exports have been redirected to India and China in particular. Russian crude exports into India rose by 260kbd m/m in December to a record 1.2mbd. January exports are on-track to nearly 1.3mbd of Russian crude. Russian Exports to China were 70kbd in December, down nearly 27%m/m. We have seen Malaysia increase exports well beyond its own output to China. In turn China has exported products such as distillates back to Europe. Where did that oil come from? Wink, Wink.
Around The Barrel Contents
Click on the links below to navigate to the relevant section.
- DOE & API Petroleum Storage Forecast Matrix
- Crude Oil Quick Summary
- Weekly DoE US Petroleum Storage Report Breakdown
- API Crude Inventories
- Cushing Oil Stocks
- Crude Imports
- Crude Exports
- Rig Watch
- Crude Oil Production
- WTI Crude Oil Futures Technical Analysis
- DCOT Report
- Option Volatility and Gamma
- Key EIA and CME Dates
The risks of global recession threaten the demand picture and with higher rates push the likelihood of a meaningful recession higher. In 2023 the market has in the background the obtuse geopolitical framework framed by Russia’s Ukraine invasion, Germany’s inept energy policy, and Iran and China pursuing aggressive directions.
The soaring US dollar has had a significant impact on commodity futures which has since reversed with the USD back at 7-month lows. Through it all demand and supply issues are the underlying guide.
DOE Weekly Petroleum Status Report Forecast
- via TradersCommunity.com
- Report Date 1/18/23
- Release Time: Wednesday, January 25, 2023, at 10:30 A.M. (ET)
- Crude EIA +0.533M Exp +2.17M Prior +8.408M API +3.378M
- Cushing EIA +4.267M Exp +3.773M Prior +3.646M API +3.928M
- Gasoline EIA +1.763M Exp +2.014M Prior +3.483M API +0.62M
- Distillate EIA -0.507M Exp -0.524M Prior -1.939M API -1.929M
- Refinery Utilization +0.8% to 86.1% Exp +1.9%
- Production UNCH kbbls at 12,200kbpd (13.10 ATH)
- SPR release -0.001 million barrels (Lowest Since 1983)
Note in bbls *exp = Reuters poll estimates adjusted for API shift, except Cushing
Refinery utilization rose just +0.8% still well under from where it fell after -12.4% for the week ending 12/31 due to arctic freeze. US petroleum (crude, SPR, refined products) inventories rose by 3.989mb w/w to 1,605.596mb last week. Inventories had fallen to a 36-year low, dropping below the previous bottom set in 2001.
Final 2022 Inventory
- Commercial crude oil inventories were up ~2.8m bbls
- SPR inventories were down ~ 221.3m bbls
- Gasoline inventories were down ~10.1m bbls
- Distillates were down ~6.5m bbls
- Jet Fuel inventories were down ~0.9m bbls
- Propane was up ~14.5m bbls
Energy Price Matrix
Update: PADD 3 Refinery Utilization
US Crude Oil Quick Look
Oil prices continue to be subject to geopolitical bifurcation dynamics with sudden changes that accompanies the onset of chaos. The unexpected knock-ons continue with imperfect bifurcation with political influence and personal vagaries from world leaders such as Putin, Scholz and Biden in addition to routine crude dynamics.
Weekly DoE US Petroleum Storage Report Breakdown
Weekly Storage via DOE
with RonH Data @Ronh and The Fundamental Angle @BrynneKKelly
Via RonH at Ron H Public Tableau Link
The Fundamental Angle with Brynne Kelly @BrynneKKelly
API Crude Oil Inventories
US petroleum (Crude, SPR, oil products) inventories in million barrels (EIA)
US total crude oil inventories (both commercial and the Strategic Petroleum Reserve) have fallen to a 36-year low, dropping below the previous bottom set in 2001 via Bloomberg
- US crude stocks In SPR fell to lowest since Dec 1983.
- We saw -0.000Mbbls taken from the SPR into the crude oil market.
- US petroleum (crude, SPR, refined products) inventories rose by 3.989mb w/w to 1,605.596mb last week.
- US total crude oil inventories (both commercial and the Strategic Petroleum Reserve) have fallen to a 36-year low, dropping below the previous bottom set in 2001.
US SPR crude inventories unchanged w/w at 371.6mb Jan 13, 2023. Sour unchanged w/w at 203.0mb Sweet unchanged w/w at 168.6mb
Cushing Oil Stocks
Cushing, OK is the hub for the most heavily traded US oil Futures contract – West Intermediate Crude – WTI so for that reason we pay special attention to the storage there.
API Cushing Stocks
Weekly Update via RonH Data @Ronh999
Closer Look at Cushing with DigStic Data @DigStic
US Oil Import Export
US crude imports by origin in kbpd (incl w/w change)
- Canada -30 to 3707
- Mexico +241 to 909
- Saudi Arabia -11 to 453
- Colombia -1 to 245
- Iraq +51 to 201
- Ecuador -137 to 0
- Nigeria +68 to 211
- Brazil +40 to 172
- Libya +132 to 132
US petroleum exports new record high 11.776mbpd in December (crude 4.948mbpd, products 6.828mbpd) – EIA
Top buyers of US crude in October in kbpd (total exports 4.146mbpd)
- India 509
- South Korea 430
- UK 401
- Netherland 413
- Canada 383
- Singapore 346
- China 332
- Italy 187
- Germany 164
- Taiwan 135
- Spain 117
US Gasoline Consumers
Input to Refineries
US consumers bought 342.0 million gallons of gasoline per day last week. That is -15.2 mil YoY
US consumers spent $1,167.8 million dollars per day for gasoline last week. That is $-19.2 mil YoY.
US avg retail price for gasoline was $3.415 last week. That is +0.092 YoY.
Baker Hughes Weekly North American Rigs Report
- US Baker Hughes Rig Count 20-Jan: 771 (prev 775)
- Rotary Gas Rigs: 156 (prev 150)
- Rotary Oil Rigs: 613 (prev 623)
US Oil Rigs w/w changes by key shale basins
- Permian -2 to 351
- Eagle Ford -1 to 68
- Williston unchanged at 42
- Cana Woodford unchanged at 24
- DJ Niobrara unchanged at 16
US oil rigs and frac spread (Baker Hughes/Primary Vision)
- Canada Rotary Drilling Rigs 16 Dec 2022
- Canada averaged 199 active drilling rigs this week according to data from the Canadian Association of Energy Contractors.
- Of those rigs, 33% are drilling for natural gas, 55% are drilling for oil, 5% for other (helium, hydrogen, geothermal, lithium, or potash), and 7% are moving. Drilling activity by province is 77% in Alberta, 12% in Saskatchewan, 9% in BC, and 2% in Manitoba.
- Precision Drilling holds the majority of the Canadian market share with 34%, Ensign Drilling with 22%, Savanna Drilling with 9%, Stampede Drilling with 7%, Horizon Drilling with 6%, and Bonanza Drilling with 5%.29dk2902l
- Canadian data should decline into year-end due to the holiday season for field staff (maybe down to 50 rigs or less).
International oil rigs ex North America
International oil rigs ex North America -12:m/m to 689 in December
- Algeria +4
- Turkey +3
- Abu Dhabi +3
- Nigeria +2
- Saudi Arabia -2
- Argentina -2
- Ecuador -2
- Mexico -3
- India -3
- Kuwait -4
- Indonesia -4
US Oil Production
US crude production changed benchmark January 19, 2023: This week’s domestic crude oil production estimate incorporates a re-benchmarking that raised estimated volumes by 52,000 barrels per day, which is about 0.4% of this week’s estimated production total. EIA
US Oil Field Production UNCH kbpd 12.20 mbpd (New Benchmark adj)
OPEC Crude Oil Production
OPEC crude oil production fell by 1m b/d to 28.8m b/d last month according to a survey from Bloomberg. Led by the four Gulf producers that needed to cut according to lower baselines. Overall, the 10 producers with quotas pumped around 1m b/d below the collective target via @Ole_S_Hansen – Bloomberg Survey
Gulf of Mexico
WTI Crude Oil Futures Technical Analysis
via KnovaWave @KnovaWave
US Crude Oil (WTI)
Daily: WTI Crude Oil still chopping after completing the correction in 3 waves, C at the breakup level broke out of its daily bull flag through tenkan, kijun and 50dma right to the bottom of the cloud such was the impulse. From there it has been held back & needs to break above those descending levels for higher. We are in a completive mode for bulls with this impulse, it’s a question of degree on the topside, use the Murrey math 240/60 grid. From there down in 3 waves, completing a C or IV? Support is previous lows and the bull flag. The bear case is the high was a complete 5.
Weekly: WTI crude Oil futures spat the key 61.8% last month with impulse, having plunged more than 30% off the June highs. It has however been stuck in its sphere of influence since other than a peek this week. WTI completed 3 waves and powered through the tenkan and 50wma, however they both failed to hold the retest. Risk support is the grid. Long term 61.8% target fueled the spit of a spit by ABC bull flag after rebalanced Chikou sated. Resistance Weekly Kijun, cloud and Murrey Math levels and previous breaks (off monthly). Bear case is Wave 5 complete.
The key is crowd behavior to help tell the story which in energy is often around geopolitics. A great example of why we watch ABC corrections and from here we get the energy from the break being balanced. This move that was powered by 50 dma Tenkan spit of a spit – hence the fractal energies reverberations.
These are special times, recall “After we regained the pattern 261.8% from the extreme (-$40) move. The climax of the larger acceleration lower after broke the weekly uptrend, a fractal of the sharp and all the way to all-time lows to negative pricing we have seen mirror replications.” Above we have Murrey Math time and price
What we broke…….
Crude Oil in the past quarter built a huge bull flag. We watch if the recent break was false, or we fail. Very clear pattern.
The focus remains 85.61-88.01 a region defined by the 2013 low, the 100% extension of the March decline and the 61.8.% retracement of the November advance. A break below opens up the objective 2020 yearly open and 2018 high at 75.35-76.87. This would become an area of interest for downside exhaustion and price inflection potentially. Initial weekly the 38.2% Fibonacci retracement of the June decline at 100.21. Broader bearish invalidation now lowered to the June high-week close / 61.8% retracement at 109.16-110
Crude Oil Futures Commitment of Traders
Latest ICE and CFTC Open Interest Data:
CTFC and ICE open interest:
Money managers increased their net-length in Brent crude oil futures and options by 55,340 contracts to 212,452 in the week ending January 17 via ICE
- Long-only positions rose by 28,837
- Short-only positions fell by 26,503
- other reportables net-length fell by 22,606
Money managers increased their net-length in WTI crude oil futures and options by 25,867 contracts to 182,052 in the week ending January 17 via CFTC
- Long-only positions rose by 7,103
- Short-only positions fell by 18,764
- other reportables net-length fell by 11,050
Chart: Crude net-positioning of non-commercial accounts (=managed money and other reportables) in barrels and in US dollars (Brent and WTI futures and options combined) latest value is Jan 19, 2023
COT on Commodities
Specs sold Crude oil for a second week in response to a near 10% slump in the first days of trading. The comb. net long was cut by 13.6k lots to 313k lots, driven by WTI long liquidation (-10.8k) and fresh short selling in Brent (+10k). Natgas short hit March 2020 high #OOTT
Money managers in commodities covering the wk to Jan 10 saw speculators make major changes as the US dollar and yields dropped and recession risks rose. Hedge funds opened their 2023 accounts by aggressively cutting exposure across the agriculture sector (corn, sugar, coffee, hogs) while buying was concentrated in a few metals led by copper and gold. Total length dropped the most in six months
via Ole S Hansen @Ole_S_Hansen
via Ole S Hansen @Ole_S_Hansen
Understanding DCOT Reports
Read Understanding Commitments of Traders Reports – COT, TFF and DCOT to help understand the disaggregated reports (DCOT) and how they break down the reportable open interest positions into four classifications:
1. Producer/Merchant/Processor/User 2. Swap Dealers 3. Managed Money 4. Other Reportables
Crude Oil Option Volatility Watch
Energy Earnings Highlights for Q3 2022
Energy earning season saw increased production and earnings with improved North American and international markets for drilling, completion, and production. In Q3 we saw big oil reporting bumper third quarter profits as the US heads into Midterm elections. We now have had US Majors Oil giant Exxon Mobil posted a record profit, Chevron also posted a near record profit and Refiner Phillips 66 booked $5.4 billion in gains compared with $402 million during the same period last year. European majors, Shell, Europe’s largest oil company reported profits of $9.45 billion and British oil major BP PLC reported $8.2bn in earnings.
Key EIA and CME Dates for WTI Crude Oil
Key EIA and CME Dates For WTI Crude Oil
From The TradersCommunity US Research Desk