Reference oil prices add more than 3% on Wednesday after a report by the U.S. Department of Energy pointed to an unexpected decline in the country’s oil reserves.
The U.S. oil reserves in the week ending May 15 decreased by 5 million barrels, the country’s Energy Ministry said. Gasoline reserves in the U.S. increased by 2.8 million barrels over the week, while distillates increased by 3.8 million barrels. S&P Global Platts analysts, in turn, expected an increase in oil reserves by 2.4 mn barrels, while distillates – by 3.2 mn barrels. At the same time, they predicted a decrease in gasoline reserves by 3.5 mn barrels.
According to the data of the American Petroleum Institute (API), published on Tuesday, oil reserves in the U.S. in the week ending May 15 decreased by 4.8 million barrels. Gasoline reserves decreased by 651 thousand barrels, distillates – increased by 5.1 million barrels. Oil reserves at the Cushinging terminal decreased by 5 mln barrels.
According to MarketWatch, the near end of the futures curve at WTI on Monday went into backwards (the June contract became more expensive than the July one). This is a sign of “high demand for physical oil, as well as the availability of storage space,” notes one of the editors of Sevens Report Research Tyler Ritchie.
WTI oil has risen 70% since the beginning of the month, after a collapse in April, when its price fell below zero for the first time in history, writes Bloomberg. Meanwhile, some experts expect that oil prices will remain at current levels until new growth catalysts appear.
“At the moment, we expect that in the absence of significant events that can fundamentally change the balance of supply and demand, prices will be close to current values,” – said senior analyst of oil markets Rystad Energy Paola Rodriguez Masiu.
WTI oil futures for July on the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX) by this time rose by $1.28 (4.32%) to $33.34 per barrel.