Ethanol Stocks, Blending Demand Ease

NEW YORK (DTN) -- The U.S. Energy Information Administration released a weekly report midmorning Wednesday, Nov. 8, showing decreases for U.S. ethanol inventory and blending demand while plant production rose again during the week-ended Nov. 3.

The EIA's Weekly Petroleum Status Report showed fuel ethanol stocks fell by 200,000 barrels (bbl), or 0.9%, to 21.3 million bbl, with a year-over-year supply overhang at 2.1 million bbl, or 10.9%.

Most of the stock decline occurred along the East and West coasts, where supplies reportedly were drawn down 500,000 bbl and 200,000 bbl, respectively. Midwest stocks rose 300,000 bbl, or 3.8%, to 8.1 million bbl, the highest since mid-May and 24.6% above a year ago. The Gulf Coast saw a stock build of 200,000 bbl to 3.8 million bbl.

Domestic plant production edged up 1,000 barrels per day (bpd) to a 1.057 million bpd two-month high during the week reviewed, while up 55,000 bpd, or 5.5%, year over year. For the four weeks ended last week, ethanol production averaged 1.043 million bpd, up 40,000 bpd, or 4.0%, against year prior.

Net refiner and blender inputs, a measure for ethanol demand, tumbled 12,000 bpd, or 1.3%, to a 918,000 bpd four-week high, while down 5,000 bpd, or 0.5%, year over year. For the four-week period ended Nov. 3, blending demand averaged 924,000 bpd, up 4,000 bpd, or 0.4%, against the comparable period a year ago.

Fuel ethanol imports of 35,000 bpd were received along the West Coast last week, the data shows.