Oil Imports Set Record in July: U.S. imports of crude oil and its derivatives toppled a 17-year-old record last month, though overall demand for petroleum products declined. The import level, reported by the American Petroleum Institute, illustrates a well-established trend in the U.S. economy: Business and individuals are becoming increasingly dependent on foreign oil. Taken together, imports of crude oil and petroleum products in July, at an average of 10.059 million barrels daily, were up 9.1% from the previous July, according to the API, the trade group for major U.S.-based oil companies. Imports last month accounted for about 58% of domestic demand, another record. It was also the first time imports exceeded the level of 10 million barrels a day.