Commercial crude oil stocks decreased by 4 million barrels, or 0.8%, to 466.6 million barrels for the week ending May 3, the EIA data showed. The market expectation was an increase of 1.2 million barrels. Stocks jumped by 9.9 million barrels during the previous week.
Strategic petroleum reserves, which are not included in the commercial crude stocks, fell by 0.9 million barrels to 647.7 million barrels last week, according to the data.
Gasoline inventories decreased by 0.6 million barrels, or 0.3%, to 226.1 million barrels during that period, coming almost in line with the market expectation of a decline of 0.4 million barrels. During the previous week, gasoline inventories saw a increase of 0.9 million barrels.
- Crude production falls
The U.S.' crude oil production decreased by 101,000 barrels per day (bpd) to around 12.2 million bpd (mbpd) for the week ending May 3, the EIA data showed.
Last week, a 1,000 bpd decline in crude production was seen in the state of Alaska, while other U.S. states excluding Hawaii posted an output fall of 100,000 bpd.
This marked the 18th time that U.S. crude production showed a decrease over the past 70 weeks.
Production is expected to average 12.45 mbpd in 2019 and 13.4 mbpd in 2020, according to the EIA's Short Term Energy Outlook report for May.
By Ovunc Kutlu