US demand and trade – Apr 2019

Published at 19:25 28 Jun 2019 by . Last edited 11:18 22 Aug 2019.

US oil demand recovered to rise y/y by 0.17 mb/d to 20.21 mb/d in April, a 0.11 mb/d downward revision from the weekly EIA estimates—we had expected 0.5 mb/d downward revision to the weekly data. Demand for the four main products fell by 0.13 mb/d y/y, led by fuel oil (-0.24 mb/d y/y), where exports were revised higher amidst a greater pull from the rest of the world.

US gasoline demand increased by 0.17 mb/d y/y to 9.36 mb/d in April as US vehicle miles travelled (VMT) increased by 2.5% y/y. Gasoline demand in PADD 1 increased by 96 thousand b/d y/y to 3.34 mb/d, and VMTs in the Northeast and South Atlantic regions increased by 2.6% y/y and 1.8% y/y respectively. The seasonally adjusted Consumer Price Index increased by 0.3% m/m after rising by 0.4% m/m in March.

US distillate demand declined by 0.17 mb/d to below 4 mb/d in April, led by weakness in PADD 1 (-0.12 mb/d) amidst adverse weather and a late Easter. The ISM manufacturing index fell by 4.5% m/m to 52.8 in April, a two-and-a-half year low. April’s m/m decrease provides additional evidence of a manufacturing sector in a downtrend as the index fell further away from a high of 60.8 in August 2018. 

US crude imports rose by 0.27 mb/d m/m but fell by 1.22 mb/d y/y to 7.03 mb/d in April. Non-OPEC countries led the m/m growth (+0.34 mb/d) as imports from Canada increased by 0.17 mb/d to 3.88 mb/d, followed by Russia (+88 thousand b/d). Despite imports from Venezuela increasing m/m by 67 thousand b/d in April as Chevron Pascagoula continued to bring in equity barrels, flows from OPEC slowed m/m, led by Saudi Arabia (-70 thousand b/d).

US crude exports rose m/m in April by 0.16 mb/d to 2.84 mb/d. US CDU outages remained high at 1.28 mb/d, and crude imports rose m/m by 0.27 mb/d. Canada led the m/m growth, with exports hitting a record high at 0.59 mb/d (+0.16 mb/d). Flows to Europe also recovered in April by 91 thousand b/d to 0.69 mb/d, led by the Netherlands, which hit a second high at 0.30 mb/d (+0.13 mb/d m/m).

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