By Barani Krishnan
Investing.com — U.S. crude stockpiles rose last week for the first time in three weeks, trade group API said Wednesday, bucking market expectations for a continued drop in inventories from holiday road travels as well as trucking demand at the end of last year.
U.S. crude inventories rose by 3.298 M barrels for the week ended Dec. 30, the API, which stands for the American Petroleum Institute, said. The crude build compared with the back-to-back draw of 1.3 million barrels and 3.069M barrels in the prior weeks ending Dec 23 and Dec. 16.
The API inventory also showed a 1.2 M barrel build in gasoline and a 2.4M barrel decline in distillate stockpiles.
The API numbers serve as a precursor to official inventory data on the same due from the U.S. Energy Information Administration, or EIA, on Thursday.
For last week, analysts tracked by Investing.com expect the EIA to report a crude stockpile build of 1.154M barrels, versus the 718,000-barrel rise reported during the week to Dec. 23.
On the gasoline inventory front, the consensus is for a draw of 486,000 barrels, adding to the 3.105M-barrel decline in the previous week.
With distillate stockpiles, the expectation is for a drop of 396,000 barrels versus the prior week’s gain of 282,000.