American ethanol inventories took a surprising drop last week while production also fell. The Energy Information Administration says U.S. ethanol inventories totaled 20.7 million barrels during the week ending on December 17. That’s a drop of almost 200,000 barrels from the prior week. Dow Jones industrial analysts did a recent survey that found stocks forecast to rise anywhere from 200,000 barrels to over 300,000 barrels. Daily production also dropped during the week, with production down by 36,000 barrels per day to 1.05 million a day. Analysts had expected production to rise slightly from the previous week. The Midwest is by far the largest producing region in the country, but output still fell to 991,000 barrels a day, on average, from 1.025 million barrels the previous week. Output for the week ending December 17 was the lowest total in three weeks. Inventories were down narrowly, falling to 20.705 million barrels, down from 20.88 million barrels the previous week.