API says April gasoline production at record level

API's April supply-demand statistics show increased US gasoline production, reduced gasoline pump prices, lower crude oil production, and reduced petroleum stock levels.


The American Petroleum Institute said Wednesday that US April gasoline production of 8.14 million b/d equaled a record set in 1998.

API said gasoline runs were up 1% from a year ago. Production of reformulated gasoline was especially strong, with more than 2.63 million b/d produced to meet the May 1 deadline for using summer Phase II RFG.

US RFG inventories have increased 7.7%, or 3 million bbl, to 41.9 million bbl since March. Total gasoline stocks of 202.1 million bbl were down 6.5% compared with April 1999. April's 541,000 b/d of imported gasoline were the lowest for that month since 1995.

Gasoline deliveries to market were flat at 8.389 million b/d compared with April a year ago, API said. However, it said the US Energy Information Administration's data methods and potential revisions could mean that demand growth was actually about 1%.

API said, comparing average April prices with March, retail gasoline prices declined more than 6�/gal to $1.43/gal, roughly 30% higher than average pump prices in April 1999. "Retail prices so far this year have averaged about 40% higher compared with the unusually low prices of 1999. This has contributed to weaker gasoline demand growth," API said.

Deliveries of distillate fuel oil were up 6.8% at 3.644 million b/d, a record for April, when demand usually slackens due to warmer weather.

Supply data
On the supply side, US crude oil production was down 0.2% at 5.875 million b/d. API said production in the Lower 48 states increased 1.4%, the fifth consecutive monthly increase. Alaska production was off 7.2%.

API said the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the upstream sector gained 3,000 jobs in April. Total upstream employment was 299,100, the highest level in more than a year.

API said April kerosine jet fuel deliveries were up 1.4% at 1.650 million b/d, and resid was up 5.6% at 680,000 b/d.

US NGL production was 9.7% higher at 1.959 million b/d. Imports of crude and products were 11.133 million b/d, off 0.8% from April a year ago.

Petroleum stocks levels all were down in the US. Crude oil stocks were off 8.5% at 301.8 million bbl, kerosine 4.6% at 42.3 million bbl, distillates 21.3% at 98.6 million bbl, and resid 16.4% at 33.9 million bbl. Total stocks were 920 million bbl, down 11.8% from April a year ago.

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