Saudi crude oil and fuel oil burn dropped below year-ago levels in May for the first time this year, but it remains well above historic norms and is on course for a record year overall. Total oil burn (crude and fuel oil) averaged 1.155mn b/d in May, the third highest May figure on record, and has averaged 958,000 b/d over the first five months of the year – a significantly higher figure than the 918,000 b/d over the same period last year.

Oil burn increased by 129,000 b/d month-on-month as electricity demand increased seasonally amid rising temperatures (see chart 1), and the monthly gains will likely have since accelerated amid the summer heat. The bulk of the increase was driven by higher crude oil burn, which increased by 89,000 b/d to 478,000 b/d, while fuel oil consumption increased by a more modest 40,000 b/d to 677,000 b/d (see table for full data). (CONTINUED - 744 WORDS)