U.S. Crude exports doubled in February to reach a 13-year high. This is due to strong supplies of light sweet crude from shale formations. Most of the increased exports went to Canada where crude was either blended, refined and sent back as finished petroleum products, or used to fill the gap in Canada's lagging pipeline infrastructure which lacks connections between eastern and western Canadian provinces.
Crude Oil --
June 2013 WTI crude oil futures opened today at $94.34 and trailed to trendline support at $93.23. This price marked an opportunity for traders to enter the market and WTI moved steeply back to where it opened. Volume fell off at that level suggesting traders expect upside movement.
A move back above today's high of $95.57 would signal upside potential to April 1's $98.00. But if traders are waiting for a sell opportunity, they may wait and see if the market can muster a run to February's double top at $99.45.
July 13 Brent crude oil futures opened today at $103.52 and chopped higher to $104.00. The technicals suggest a move above this level would signal upside potential to $105 and beyond. A move below uptrending support would open downside risk to $101, but volume is higher in this market than in WTI signaling Brent may have the wind to move higher near-term.
The U.S. average retail price of regular gasoline increased 7 cents to $3.60 -- 15 cents below year-ago.
The national average diesel fuel price added 2 cents of its own to $3.97 -- 14 cents below year-ago pricing.
Farm Diesel moved slightly higher as iron in the field sparks hand-to mouth purchases. The regional average price as reported by your Inputs Monitor stands at $3.427/gallon -- up $0.005 from the previous week.
Total U.S. inventories of propane increased 0.8 million barrels last week to end at 41.8 million barrels, but are 10.9 million barrels (20.7 percent) lower than the same period a year ago. The Midwest region led the gain with 0.5 million barrels, while East Coast and Rocky Mountain/West Coast inventories increased by 0.2 and 0.1 million barrels, respectively. Gulf Coast inventories declined slightly.
Propylene non-fuel-use inventories represented 8.4 percent of total propane inventories.
LP moved just a tick lower in this week's Monitor falling a scant $0.002 to $1.466.
The national distillate supply gained 2.3 million barrels to 119.9 million barrels -- 0.1 million barrels above the same time last year.