Yesterday, WTI crude closed up $0.15 to $52.98/bbl, HO closed up $0.0030 to $1.6747/gal and RBOB finished up $0.0077 to $1.5507/gal.
The market is off today due to the bearish API statistics released last night, as well as the anticipated announcement from the Fed later today. The Federal Reserve will announce its decision today at 2:00 p.m. ET, regarding whether or not it will raise rates. The expectation is an increase in interest rates by 25 points. This is putting pressure on the market because an increase in rates means a boost in the U.S. dollar, which typically results in weaker oil prices. The API statistics are as follows:
Crude: +4.7 million barrels; Cushing: +632,000 barrels
Gasoline: +3.9 million barrels
Distillates: +230,000 barrels
The market switched direction at 10:30 a.m. ET when the DOE statistics were released. The DOE statistics were completely different than the API report. There is usually some discrepancy between the two, but today was greater than normal. The DOE statistics are as follows:
Crude: -2.6 million barrels; Cushing: +1.2 million barrels
Gasoline: +497,000 barrels
Distillates: -762,000 barrels
Both refined products are trading up around a penny as of 11 a.m. ET. The charts below show how the market reacted to the APIs last night (drop in price last night into this morning) and the jump in prices once the DOE statistics came out.