Edited to add:
Just got a note from the API. They added:
According to today’s API report outlining last week’s production figures, gasoline production reached an all-time high of 9.63 million barrels per day, nearly 7 percent higher than for the same week a year ago. Utilization was 92.5 percent, up from 92.3 percent a year ago.
So, according to the API, we have a new all-time high gasoline production record. Just skimming the production numbers at the EIA, it appears that this may be a gasoline production record according to their numbers as well.
There are two noteworthy items in this week’s data release. The first is that refinery utilization came in at 93.6%, the highest level in 2 years. The second is that this affected oil inventories – crude inventories dropped 6.5 million barrels and gasoline inventories increased by 600,000 barrels.
You may have noticed recently a divergence in oil and gasoline prices, reversing the trend we saw earlier in the year (when oil inventories were rising, gasoline inventories were falling, and gasoline prices were shooting up). Where are the conspiracy theorists now, I wonder?
I do note that crude has set a new price record on this news, and a lot of people have suggested that $100 is the next stop. I can tell I may have to sweat out my $1,000 bet until the end of summer. If we get an inconvenient hurricane shortly, I could lose the bet. Or if inventories get really pulled down over the next few weeks, and OPEC says “We are tapped out”, then crude could make a run toward $100. For now, I still predict we don’t see $100 this year.