Oil watching Gaza Strip for signs of resolution, inventories take backseat

Global equity markets gained marginally over the last twenty four hours as shown in the EMI Global Equity Index table below. The Index gained about 0.27% widening the year to date gain to 4.7%. On the week the EMI Index has gained 1.9% recovering all of last week's losses and then some. Germany and Hong Kong remain at the top of the list of bourses in the Index with China and Brazil holding the bottom two spots. For the first time in weeks the global equity markets have been a bullish price drive for the oil complex as well as the broader commodity complex. That said oil prices are primarily in an event driven mode based on the evolving situation in the Middle East.

The API report was surprisingly bullish on all fronts and not in directional sync with the range of expectations. Crude oil showed a surprise draw versus an expectation for a build. In addition both gasoline and distillate stocks showed large declines in inventory versus an expectation for a build in gasoline stocks and a much smaller draw in distillate fuel inventories. The API reported a draw (of about 1.9 million barrels) in crude oil stocks versus an industry expectation for a build as crude oil imports decreased marginally while refinery run rates increased strongly by 2.2%. The API reported a large draw in distillate and gasoline stocks.

The API report is bullish across the board with many participants now looking at this morning's EIA inventory report with much more interest. The oil market is firm heading into the US trading session and ahead of the EIA oil inventory report at 10:30 AM today. The market is always cautious on trading on the API report and prefers to wait for the more widely watched EIA report due out this morning. The API reported a draw of about 1.9 million barrels of crude oil with Cushing, Ok showing a strong build of 1.1 million barrels while PADD 2 stocks also built strongly by 1.5 million barrels. On the week gasoline stocks decreased by about 4.8 million barrels while distillate fuel stocks decreased by about 4.4 million barrels. 

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