Midwest Gasoline Strengthens After Valero Memphis Reduces Rates

Midwest gasoline strengthened as Valero Energy Corp. (VLO) operated the fluid catalytic cracker at reduced rates at its Memphis refinery.

The unit has a leak in an overhead line, said Bill Day, a spokesman for the company in San Antonio. Workers at Husky Energy Inc. (HSE)’s Lima refinery in Ohio began a strike after negotiations to reach a contract agreement with the company failed.

The discount for regular, 87-octane gasoline in Chicago narrowed 5 cents to 4.5 cents a gallon against futures traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange at 12:56 p.m., according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Prompt delivery slipped 0.31 cent to $2.7784 a gallon.

The Lima refinery can process 160,000 barrels of crude a day, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. “Operations have not been affected” by the strike, Mel Duvall, a Calgary-based company spokesman, said in an e-mailed statement.

The same fuel in the Midwest, or Group 3, strengthened 1.62 cents to a discount of 8.13 cents a gallon to futures.

Flint Hills Resources LLC’s Corpus Christi refinery in Texas shut a crude unit, according to Genscape Inc., an energy information provider. A 104,000-barrel-a-day crude section in the West plant of the refinery was off, Hillary Stevenson, manager of data integrity at Genscape, said in a telephone interview yesterday.

The discount for reformulated, 87-octane gasoline, or RBOB, in the Gulf Coast narrowed 0.5 cent to 3.5 cents a gallon against futures.

To contact the reporter on this story: Paul Burkhardt in New York at pburkhardt@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dan Stets at dstets@bloomberg.net.

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