U.S. natural gas and oil industry turns in strong April performance


WASHINGTON -- The American Petroleum Institute’s latest Monthly Statistical Report (MSR) shows U.S. crude oil production sustained a record-tying 12.1 MMbopd in April 2019 while total petroleum demand was the highest for the month since 2007 at 20.2 MMbpd. Other April highlights include:

  • U.S. petroleum demand grew 1.2% year to year (y/y) in April.
  • Record gasoline demand at 9.5 MMbpd.
  • Seasonally strong jet fuel demand at 1.7 MMbpd.
  • Strongest refinery and petrochemical “other oils” feedstock demand since 2007 at 5 MMbpd.
  • Total petroleum inventories grew to 4.5% y/y. “Energy and economic growth go hand-in-hand,” said API Chief Economist Dean Foreman.

“America’s strong production and demand reflects strong consumer confidence. That combined with strong employment numbers is good news for the U.S. economy. America’s energy revolution continues to be the backbone of this success, and all Americans continue to enjoy downward pressure on prices as a result.”

The demand for distillates (diesel) fellby 10.9% between March and April and coincided with indicators that freight trucking and industrial activity slowed. API’s economic indicator, the API DEI (Distillate Economic Indicator) decreased by 0.3 percentage points in April with a three-month average level of zero, which has reflected the slowing of U.S. total industrial production.

Moreover, U.S. petroleum international trade weakened between March and April: U.S. petroleum imports rose by 1.1 MMbpd, about 60% of which was crude oil; and, crude oil exports fell by 0.4 MMbpd, which contributed to increased domestic crude oil inventories. Although the rise in petroleum imports largely appeared to be seasonal, the decline in crude oil exports could reflect heightened trade frictions plus efforts to buy Iranian crude oil before sanction waivers expired on May 2.

“Strong domestic U.S. oil and natural gas production has continued to be an enabler for the United States’ international agenda. This month’s report particularly reinforces the critical importance of U.S. international trade relations and the infrastructure to supply our trading partners.”


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