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February 22, 2011

U.S. gasoline exports hit all-time high in November 2010

U.S. exports of motor gasoline hit an all-time high in November 2010. The bulk of the record-level motor gasoline exports went to Mexico, where refinery maintenance during the month resulted in a tightening of gasoline supplies. November gasoline exports were equivalent to 5% of U.S. gasoline consumption.

U.S. exports of motor gasoline (including finished motor gasoline and motor gasoline blending components) hit a record level in November 2010 of 457 thousand barrels per day. The last time gasoline exports exceeded 400 thousand barrels per day was April 1945 when they were 419 thousand barrels per day.

About 92% of the exports were shipped from the U.S. Gulf Coast (PAD District 3), and about 70% of the exports went to Mexico.

Refinery maintenance in Mexico during the month resulted in a tightening of gasoline supplies in that country. Mexico has 6 refineries with a total capacity of about 1.5 million barrels per day, but the country consumed nearly 2.1 million barrels per day of petroleum products during 2009.

Despite the record level of exports, the United States remained a net importer of gasoline during November. The U.S. imported 757 thousand barrels per day of gasoline during the month. About 85% of the motor gasoline imports came into the U.S. East Coast (PAD District 1).

November 2010 data were consistent with the typical regional patterns for gasoline imports and exports. During all of 2009, 86% of U.S. motor gasoline imports entered into the East Coast, while 83% of U.S. motor gasoline exports were shipped from the Gulf Coast.