WTI Crude Oil Prices Decline as US Crude Stockpiles Rise Unexpectedly
Arslan Butt • 1 min read
Early on Wednesday, WTI crude oil prices are sliding lower following the release of the API report in the previous session which revealed a surprising build in crude stockpiles in the US. At the time of writing, WTI crude oil is trading at around $61.44 per barrel.
According to the API, US crude inventories increased by 1 million bpd during the past week, going against economists’ expectations for a decline by 5.2 million barrels instead. Meanwhile, refinery crude runs were down by 2.2 million bpd for the period.
Later today, WTI crude oil could experience movement on the release of the official EIA report, especially if it is in line with the API report indicating a build in US crude inventories. The numbers were especially surprising for oil traders as US crude production was impacted due to the deep freeze across Texas.
Since the beginning of this year, crude oil prices have strengthened by more than 25%, supported by optimism about the COVID-19 vaccine rollout aiding global economic recovery. In addition, the unexpected cold spell across the US has shut down a significant portion of crude production in the country, raising the possibility of tightening in supply which has lent additional support to prices.