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U.S. crude stocks down 6.8M barrels last week - API

Investing.com -- U.S. crude stockpiles fell more than expected last week and fuel demand overshot expectations too, petroleum industry group API indicated in a report Tuesday as oil bulls bet on a pick up in energy demand in the run-up to summer road, air and seaborne travel.

The U.S. crude inventory balance fell by 6.799 million barrels during the week ended May 19, according to the API, or American Petroleum Institute. The petroleum industry group reported a crude build of 3.69M barrels in the prior week to May 12.

Notwithstanding the latest weekly slump in crude stockpiles, the API reported a 1.711M barrel build at the Cushing, Oklahoma delivery point for U.S. crude. It had also cited a build for Cushing in the previous week to May 12, reporting 2.87M barrels.

On the fuel side, API reported a gasoline inventory draw of 6.398M barrels and a distillate stock drop of 1.771M barrels. In the previous week, it noted a 2.46M barrel drop for gasoline and 0.886M slide for distillates.

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The API data serves as a precursor to official inventory data on the same due from the U.S. Energy Information Administration, or EIA, on Wednesday.

For last week, analysts tracked by Investing.com expect the EIA to report a crude stockpile drop of 0.920M barrels, versus the 5.04M barrel rise reported during the week to May 5.

On the gasoline inventory front, the consensus is for a draw of 0.695M barrels over the 1.381M-barrel decline in the previous week. Automotive fuel gasoline is the No. 1 U.S. fuel product.

With distillate stockpiles, the expectation is for a build of 0.057M barrels versus the prior week’s build of 0.080M. Distillates are refined into heating oil, diesel for trucks, buses, trains and ships and fuel for jets.

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