Feb 23, 2018

Why U.S. crude exports just surged again

U.S. crude oil exports jumped back above two million barrels per day in the week ending Feb. 16, which is just the second time this level has been reached since heavy restrictions ended in late 2015.

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Data: Energy Information Administration; Chart: Axios Visuals

The last jump: It came in the weeks after Hurricane Harvey took a lot of refinery capacity offline, according to Energy Information Administration data.

There are 2 main trends behind the U.S. becoming an increasingly prominent player in global crude markets the U.S. oil production boom and the export policy change.

  • But there's also lots of variation week to week even as the general trend is upward.
  • The swirl of factors behind the most recent weekly surge of roughly 700,000 barrels per day likely include maintenance at Gulf Coast refineries, which leaves more barrels looking for a home.

Quick take: "Crude demand from refineries is down for seasonal maintenance, while U.S. crude production is at all-time highs; the surplus is driving strong exports," Citibank analysts said in a note yesterday.

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  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9:30 p.m. ET: 5,405,029 — Total deaths: 344,997 — Total recoveries — 2,168,408Map.
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  3. World: White House announces travel restrictions on Brazil, coronavirus hotspot in Southern Hemisphere Over 100 coronavirus cases in Germany tied to single day of church services — Boris Johnson backs top aide amid reports that he broke U.K. lockdown while exhibiting symptoms.
  4. Public health: Officials are urging Americans to wear masks headed into Memorial Day weekend Report finds "little evidence" coronavirus under control in most statesHurricanes, wildfires, the flu could strain COVID-19 response
  5. Economy: White House economic adviser Kevin Hassett says it's possible the unemployment rate could still be in double digits by November's election — Public employees brace for layoffs.
  6. Federal government: Trump attacks a Columbia University study that suggests earlier lockdown could have saved 36,000 American lives.
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