U.S. Naphthenic Output Tanked in January


Base oil production in the United States decreased 8% in January, while naphthenic base oil output sank 24% to its lowest mark in several years, according to data released by the U.S. Energy Information Administration on March 29.

U.S. refiners made 4.5 million barrels of base oil in January, down from 4.9 million barrels in the same month a year ago.

In every year since 2012, U.S. base oil production in January had ranged between 4.9 million and 5.1 million barrels. This year’s output for that month was the lowest recorded since 4.2 million barrels in 2010.

Production of paraffinic base oil decreased by 5% to 4 million barrels for the month. That would have been among the highest monthly paraffinic production figures during 2023, which saw peaks of 4.3 million barrels in May and December.

Production of naphthenic base oils was 535,000 barrels in January, down from 708,000 barrels 12 months earlier. The latest figure was the lowest for any month since the 472,000-barrels mark reported in March 2020 at the start of COVID-19 pandemic restrictions.

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