Friday January 5, 2018
The East Coast cold weather is expected to last through the weekend, however the weather did not support any price increase on Friday. Though there is certainly some demand surge from this cold snap, the heavy snowfall along the East Coast corridor has kept trucks off the road. That could be limiting some liftings and “demand”.
For the week, the entire complex was down, far different than last week’s price action. Yesterday, the Department of Energy data was rather bearish showing massive builds in distillate products and gasoline. That said, year-end inventory data is notoriously subject to revision (year-end accounting needs and slow data reporting due to people being away on holiday).
Refiners continue to run at very high rates with very high margins, which is keeping the southern end of the East Coast well supplied. The Northeast supply picture is a little different with fewer supply options and a greater demand base (population), which is why we see stronger rack prices north of Richmond (i.e. Baltimore, Philadelphia) than in the South.