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US crude oil supplies rise by 5.2 million barrels

October 23, 2013

NEW YORK (AP) — The United States’s crude oil supplies rose sharply last week, the government said Wednesday.

Crude supplies increased by 5.2 million barrels, or 1.4 percent, to 378.9 million barrels, which is 1.2 percent above year-ago levels, the Energy Department’s Energy Information Administration said.

Analysts expected an increase of 3 million barrels for the week ended Oct. 18, according to Platts, the energy information arm of McGraw-Hill.

Gasoline supplies fell by 1.8 million barrels, or 0.8 percent, to 215.5 million barrels. That’s 8.5 percent more than year-ago levels. Analysts expected gasoline supplies to fall by 400,000 barrels.

Demand for gasoline over the four weeks ended Oct. 18 was up 2.3 percent from a year ago, averaging 8.8 million barrels a day.

U.S. refineries ran at 85.9 percent of total capacity on average, down 0.3 percentage points from the prior week. Analysts expected capacity to rise to 86.7 percent.

Supplies of distillate fuel, which include diesel and heating oil, rose by 1.5 million barrels to 125.8 million barrels. Analysts expected distillate stocks to fall by 1.6 million barrels.

U.S. benchmark crude futures fell $1.82 to $96.48 a barrel in morning trading in New York.

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