Total US gasoline stocks climbed 200,000 barrels to 232.28 million barrels last week. The counter-seasonal build narrowed the deficit to the five-year average to 3.7% from 5% the week prior.
The build comes amid a second week of strong import activity. Total gasoline imports edged up 29,000 b/d to 940,000 b/d, a fresh eight-month high.
NYMEX April RBOB settled 9.26 cents higher March 24 at $1.9890/gal, and April ULSD climbed 7.67 cents to $1.8256/gal.
US Atlantic Coast gasoline imports averaged 750,000 b/d, the highest since early October. On the USGC, which typically sees negligible inflows due to the high density of refiners in the region, imports reached 170,000 b/d, the highest since July 2019.
The USAC import surge held regional gasoline draws to just 110,000 barrels, narrowing the deficit to the five-year average to 0.6% from 2.8% the week prior.
Implied demand for gasoline was up 170,000 b/d to 8.62 million b/d, pushing the four-week moving average to a four-month high 8.48 million b/d.
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But total refined product demand was down around 1.2% on the week at 18.7 million b/d. This downturn was led by a 440,000 b/d slide in distillate demand to an 11-week low 3.59 million b/d.
Total distillate stocks climbed 3.81 million barrels to 141.55 million barrels, putting stocks above the five-year average for the first time since the week ended Feb. 19.