North America Crude Markets short-term outlook: May 2023
US monthly export volumes decreased 950 kb/d to 3.8 million b/d in April, retreating from a massive record-setting surge in March. As expected, volumes returned to Earth as a buying spree in Asia cooled off and domestic crude consumption rebounded with US refinery maintenance wrapping up. Following export whiplash in recent months, where will volumes go from here? Meanwhile, Spring 2023 has been a historic refinery turnaround season following years of maintenance deferrals. Despite lower US crude runs – especially in PADDs II and III – WCS prices exhibited surprising strength relative to WTI in recent months. In this report, we delve into facility-level details (provided by our refinery monitoring) to assess the actual impacts of PADD II turnaround season on Canadian heavy crude consumption.