I produce oil in Kansas and talked to a transport driver who works for Plains Mkting for 22 years. His drop off for oil is Cushing, Oklahoma. He stated to me that the media has gotten ahold the fact that "Cushing is at full capacity for crude." He stated "at the end of the month" Cushing always claims full capacity. He has even waited 2 days to unload. Even last year while prices where above 100 he has had to wait to unload at the eom. The media has blown this way out proportion and I feel we have seen the lows.
For example, if somebody say China's version of Cushing were at "Record Inventory" levels...the media would spin it as the falling demand in China. Meanwhile, China demand for oil is probably up versus last year, but growing more slowly. Whenever a "product" is growing, inventory will go up, that is math. Now, I know the US is not in the same situation at this point, but it is all about the spin. I would doubt the Cushings's days on hand is up more than a day or two from last year's levels.
Perhaps this is a major reason tanker ships are being used for storage. If purchasers of crude are certain (if anyone can be certain), that price of oil goes higher, then filling up the tanks makes all the sense in the world. On the other hand perhaps some big oil might have contracted for more oil than they need to refine and have to go to the tanker storage. I also wonder if opec is planing major cuts big oil wants to load up now before supply is limited and prices rise. Still many analysts saying oil is going back to $80 in 2009.