Total US petroleum deliveries, a measure of demand, meanwhile, increased 1.9% from last May to average 18.9 million b/d, the highest May deliveries in 6 years.
The report comes on the heels of BP PLC’s 63rd annual Statistical Review of World Energy in which the firm said the US recorded the largest increment to global oil consumption in 2013, while recording the largest production increase in the world and the largest annual increment in the country’s history for a second consecutive year (OGJ Online, June 16, 2014).
“Last month saw a continuation of recent trends, with strong demand and even stronger production resulting in falling import levels,” said John Felmy, API chief economist.
Total imports averaged just less than 9.6 million b/d during the month, falling 4.5% from the prior year. Crude oil imports fell 1.9% over the same period to 7.6 million b/d. Both figures represent the lowest May levels in 19 years, the report said.
US imports of refined products declined 13.2% from last year to the lowest imports level in 18 years at 2 million b/d.
At 16.1 million b/d, US refinery gross inputs were up 2.4% from last May to the highest level for the month since 2005. Exports of refined products were up 10.9% from the prior year to average 3.8 million b/d, the highest on record for the month.
The refinery capacity utilization rate averaged 89.7% in May. API’s latest refinery operable capacity was 17.934 million b/d.
Crude oil stocks ended at 382.9 million bbl, down 2.4% from the prior year. Stocks of motor gasoline were down 3.6% from last year to 213.7 million bbl in May. Distillate, jet fuel, and other oils stocks were all down from year ago levels.
Gasoline demand gained 3.6% from May 2013 to average 9.3 million b/d, the highest level for the month since 2007. Demand increased for jet fuel 0.6% and for distillate 5.2% from the prior year to average 1.4 million b/d and just below 4 million b/d, respectively.
Residual fuel deliveries fell 13.5% over the same period to an all-time record low of 186,000 b/d, and demand for other oils fell 1.1% over last year’s levels.
Gasoline production rose to a new all-time high of 10.3 million b/d—the first time ever above 10 million b/d—on an increase of 10.9% over May 2013 output. Production of distillate fuel reached the highest output level ever recorded for the month of May. The 5% increase from the prior year lifted distillate production to just more than 5 million b/d.