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US crude oil stocks build for fifth consecutive week


US commercial crude oil inventories increased by 1.9M bbls w-o-w and 47.4M bbls y-o-y to 502.7M bbls during the week ending March 19, according to the US Energy Information Administration (EIA). Stocks have now built for the past five consecutive weeks, rising to the highest level since the week ending December 4 and remaining at around 6% above the five-year average for this time of year. Total motor gasoline stocks also increased by 200K b/d w-o-w to a three-week high of 232.3M bbls, however this is still a decline of 7M bbls y-o-y. Refinery input rose by 1M b/d w-o-w to 14.4M b/d, with refinery utilisation also averaging a five-week high of 81.6%. Crude oil imports increased by 300K b/d w-o-w to 5.62M b/d, whereas exports fell by 40K b/d w-o-w and 1.37M b/d y-o-y to 2.48M b/d.