Demand for U.S. petroleum fell for a second consecutive week, while crude production rebounded, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said Wednesday.

Refinery utilization, however, reached a 2021 high, the agency said in its Weekly Petroleum Status Report (WPSR). Refineries operated at 91.3% of their capacity and inputs averaged 15.9 million b/d during the week ended June 4, up 327,000 b/d from the previous week.  

The refinery activity implies “a tighter production versus consumption balance,” analysts at ClearView Energy Partners LLC said. Refinery runs last week were at the highest level since prior to the onset of the pandemic in early 2020.

U.S. commercial crude inventories, excluding those in the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, decreased by 5.2 million bbl...