WASHINGTON (DTN) -- Domestic ethanol stocks edged higher, while net refiner and blender inputs continued on a downward trajectory for the second straight week in line with lower seasonal demand, the Energy Information Administration reported on Wednesday, Jan. 9.
Total domestic ethanol stocks increased a modest 92,000 barrels (bbl) to 23.254 bbl, a 2.6% surplus in inventories from the corresponding week a year ago.
Data detailed ethanol stocks at the East Coast PADD 1 also increased fractionally to 7.043 million bbl, but remained 2.8% lower than the corresponding week in 2018. At the Midwest PADD 2, stockpiles gained 317,000 bbl to 8.449 million bbl, 6.3% higher than inventory on-hand last year. Gulf Coast PADD 3 stocks declined by 345,000 bbl to 4.255 million bbl, which is 8.5% lower than a year ago while West Coast PADD V ethanol inventories decreased 32,000 bbl to 3.144 million bbl, 19.2% above year ago.
Plant production continued lower to 1.0 million barrels per day (bpd) after easing 11,000 bpd from the previous week, with several operators cutting output or shutting plants due to weak operating margins. Four-week averaged production was 1.025 million bpd versus 1.049 million bpd during the corresponding four-week period in 2018.
Net refiner and blender inputs, a measure for ethanol demand, slumped 53,000 bpd, or 6.1%, to an 815,000 bpd one-year low. For the four weeks ended Jan. 4, blending demand averaged 886,000 bpd, 9,000 bpd above the same period in 2018.
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