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Total commercial petroleum inventories  dropped by 10.2 million barrels for the week ending 7/14 versus the previous week, with inventories for crude oil down -4.7 million barrels and inventories for motor gasoline down -4.4 million barrels. Over the last 4 weeks, an increase in demand for distillate fuel products (+9.9%) and jet fuel (+5.6%) was offset by a decrease in demand for gasoline (-0.8%), and the overall increase in demand for all petroleum products was up +2.1% compared to the same period last year.
Housing starts  increased by 8.3% in June, to a higher than expected annualized rate of 1.22 million, and May’s starts were revised upwards from an annual rate of 1.09 million to 1.12 million. Year over year, total construction starts were up +2.1%, with single family homes up +10.3%, and multifamily homes down -12.9%. For June, single family home starts were up in the Northeast +9.3% M/M (-19.2% Y/Y), in the West +10.6% M/M (+22.4% Y/Y), and in the South +7.2% M/M (+8.5% Y/Y), but down in the Midwest -3.6% M/M (+17.5% Y/Y).
Manufacturing growth in the mid-Atlantic region slowed in July, although respondents of the Philadelphia Federal Reserve’s Manufacturing Business Outlook Survey  remained generally optimistic that growth would continue in the future. In July, significantly more respondents saw decreases for new orders (-23.8), shipments (-16.3), prices received (-11.6), and the average workweek (-16.7), but, over the next six months, respondents forecast increases in new orders (+7.5), unfilled orders (+8), and capital expenditures (+13.4), with decreases in shipments (-12.8), number of employees (-3.0), and the average workweek (-4.9).
Upcoming Economic Reports:
Wednesday July 26 – Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) Meeting Announcement
Friday July 28 – GDP