EIA: Ethanol production down 2%, stocks up slightly

By Erin Voegele | November 18, 2020

U.S. fuel ethanol production fell by nearly 2 percent the week ending Nov. 13 while ethanol stocks increased slightly, according to data released by the U.S. Energy Information Administration on Nov. 18.

U.S. ethanol production fell to an average of 962,000 barrels per day the week ending Nov. 13, down 15,000 barrels per day when compared to the 977,000 barrels per day of production reported for the previous week. When compared to the 1.033 million barrels per day produced during the same week of last year, production was down 71,000 barrels per day.

Production of fuel ethanol has stabilized in recent months after falling to historic lows in the spring of 2020 due to market impacts caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Ethanol production hit a low of 537,000 barrels per day the week ending April 24, but began to recover in May and June as travel restrictions associated with the pandemic began to ease and demand for transportation fuels began to recover. Production levels since July have generally stabilized in the range of 900,000 to 950,000 barrels per day, down roughly 10 percent when compared to the same period of last year.

Weekly ending stocks of fuel ethanol increased to 20.203 million barrels the week ending Nov. 13, up 44,000 barrels when compared to the 20.159 million barrels of production reported for the previous week. Stocks of fuel ethanol have fallen over the past several months after reaching a record high of 27.289 million barrels the week ending April 17. When compared to the same week of last year, ethanol stocks were down 284,000 barrels.