Oil Extends Rally After EIA Report

NEW YORK (DTN) -- New York Mercantile Exchange oil futures rallied further in midmorning trade after the Energy Information Administration released data that showed a smaller-than-expected crude oil stock build and higher products demand in the United States.

At 11 a.m. ET, NYMEX April West Texas Intermediate crude futures rose $1.38 to $37.72 bbl, and May Brent crude futures traded on the IntercontinentalExchange rose $1.34 to $40.08 bbl.

In products trade, NYMEX April ULSD futures rose 4.47cts to $1.2224 gallon, while April RBOB futures edged up 0.74cts to $1.4156 gallon, although is holding below a two-day high of $1.4356.

EIA's data for the week-ended March 11 detailed a 1.3 million bbl crude stock increase, falling short of an expected 3.3 million bbl stock gain and less than a 1.5 million bbl build reported late Tuesday by the American Petroleum Institute.

On products, EIA reported gasoline stockpiles were drawn down by 747,000 bbl for the week, below an expected 3.5 million bbl stock decline while the API reported a 1.2 million bbl draw. Distillate stocks fell 1.1 million bbl last week, less than an expected 1.3 million bbl stock draw, while the API reported an 830,000 bbl decline.

On demand, gasoline consumption was up 47,000 bpd while distillates demand rose 164,000 bpd during the week reviewed.

Ahead of the EIA report, NYMEX oil futures had advanced after the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries announced a meeting with non-OPEC producers in Qatar on April 17 to discuss a plan to freeze production at January levels.

Traders are also positioning for fresh guidance from the Federal Reserve on when interest rates are likely to rise. The Fed will provide an outlook on the U.S. economy when the central bank makes its announcement at 2 p.m. ET..

George Orwel can be reached at george.orwel@dtn.com