(New throughout, adds analyst comment, updates futures prices)
NEW YORK, Oct 15 (Reuters) - U.S. crude stocks surged by 7.6 million barrels last week, the largest build since April, while gasoline and distillate inventories fell, data from the Energy Information Administration (EIA) showed on Thursday.
Crude inventories rose by 7.6 million barrels to 468.56 million barrels last week, compared with analysts’ expectations for an increase of 2.8 million barrels.
The rise posted by the EIA was not as large as the 9.4 million-barrel jump reported on Tuesday by industry group American Petroleum Institute (API).
The API pegged total U.S. crude stockpiles at 465.96 million barrels.
Crude stocks at the Cushing, Oklahoma, delivery hub rose by 1.125 million barrels, EIA said.
U.S. crude imports rose last week by 247,000 barrels per day (bpd), EIA data showed.
Crude stocks in the Gulf Coast region gained 3.032 million barrels to 242.971 million, their second highest level since EIA started tracking it in 1990.
Only the East Coast posted a drop in crude inventories, slipping 297,000 barrels to 15.193 million.
“As expected, the crude numbers were larger than thought due to the refinery maintenance season,” Tariq Zahir, fund manager and trader at Tyche Capital Advisors in Laurel Hollow, New York.
U.S. and Brent crude stocks extended losses after the EIA data’s release.
U.S. November crude was down $1.24 at $45.40 a barrel at 11:48 a.m. EDT (1548 GMT), having traded from $45.23 to $46.61.
Brent November crude was off 78 cents at $48.37, having traded from $48.21 to $49.38. The Brent November contract expires at the end of Thursday’s session.
Refinery crude runs fell by 292,000 bpd, EIA data showed. Refinery utilization rates fell by 1.5 percentage points to 86 percent of capacity.
East Coast refinery utilization jumped 9.4 percentage points to 89.8 percent of capacity last week, while Midwest utilization fell 5.6 percentage points to 73.6 percent, the lowest on record since 2010, according to EIA data.
Gasoline stocks fell by 2.6 million barrels, compared with analysts’ expectations in a Reuters poll for a 1.7 million barrels drop.
Distillate stockpiles, which include diesel and heating oil, fell by 1.5 million barrels, the EIA data showed, versus expectations for a 60,000 barrels drop.
“The declines in refined products do not offset the bearish aspect of the crude oil data,” said John Kilduff, partner, Again Capital LLC in New York.
“The low refinery runs will continue to allow crude oil inventories to rise significantly over the next several weeks, resulting in further downward price pressure,” Kilduff added. (Reporting By Jessica Resnick-Ault, Barani Krishnan and Robert Gibbons in New York)