U.S. Base Oil Output Rebounds in August


United States base oil production jumped 18% in August, marking the first year-on-year increase in production volume since January.

Total base oil output rose despite an 11% decrease in naphthenic base oil production.

U.S. refineries made 4.8 million barrels of mineral base stocks in August, compared to 4 million barrels in the same month of 2022. It was the second-highest monthly figure this year, behind 5.1 million barrels in May.

This year’s August level was still quite low compared to typical output during that month. In the past 15 years, August production failed to exceed 5 million barrels only two other years: August 2020, which saw output of 4.6 million barrels during the throes of the COVID-19 pandemic; and August 2009, during the Great Recession, when refiners made 4.9 million barrels.

Year-to-date base oil production is running 8% behind last year at 36.3 million barrels.

Paraffinic base oil production was up 24% at 4.2 million barrels in August, likewise the second-highest total for that variety behind 4.3 million barrels in May.

Production of naphthenic base oil in the U.S. fell to 611,000 barrels in August, compared to 690,000 barrels a year earlier. The volume was the second lowest this year, and the lowest since 580,000 barrels in February.