US gross crude oil imports increased by 528,000 barrels per day as a result in changes in crude oil price spreads.
According to the US Energy Information Administration, this 7% increase reverses a multiyear trend of decreasing US crude oil imports as a result of increasing US production.
Imports from Nigeria, Iraq and other members of OPEC rose by 504,000 barrels per day. Imports from Mexico fell 118,000 barrels per day.
During the first half of 2016, changes in crude oil price spreads were a significant fact and the narrowing price differences provided an incentive for increased imports by refiners in areas where imported crude has a delivered cost advantage relative to similar domestic crudes.
Lower overall crude prices contributed to a decline in US crude production from an average of 9.5 million barrels per day in the first half of 2015 to nine million barrels per day in the first half of 2016, which resulted in higher net crude oil imports.