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Ethanol production up for third week in a row

U.S. ethanol production moved higher last week as stocks sank.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration says production was an eight-week high, averaging 1.068 million barrels a day, up 49,000 on the week and 64,000 on the year.

That is the third week in a row with a gain as producers and retailers end seasonal maintenance and prepare for the summer driving season.

Ethanol stocks hit a near six-month low, falling 1.005 million barrels from the previous week to 23.207 million barrels, which was still 875,000 above a year ago.

The Renewable Fuels Associations says net inputs of ethanol purchased by refiners and blenders were fractionally higher, while the volume of gasoline supplied to the market dipped nearly 2%.

Ethanol exports averaged 212,000 barrels a day, the largest volume since the series of estimates started last year, and a jump of 129,000 from the prior week.

Exports and net inputs combined for the highest weekly ethanol usage on record.

Corn for ethanol use remains on pace to meet or exceed USDA projections for the current marketing year, with the next guess out June 12th.

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