U.S. Gulf Gasoline Strengthens After Valero’s Meraux Plant Shut

U.S. Gulf Coast gasoline strengthened after Valero Energy Corp.’s 135,000-barrel-a-day Meraux refinery in Louisiana was shut following a fire in a crude unit yesterday.

All components at the plant will remain down while repairs are made to the crude unit and related utilities, Bill Day, a San Antonio-based spokesman for Valero, said in an e-mail. An assessment is under way to determine if downstream elements can be restarted while the work is being done, Day said.

The discount for conventional, 87-octane gasoline in the Gulf Coast narrowed 0.37 cent to 19.38 cents a gallon versus futures traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange at 1:15 p.m., according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Prompt delivery fell 4.07 cents to $2.7048 a gallon.

New York gasoline slipped for a seventh day as a tanker arrived in the region with supplies. Another is scheduled.

The discount for conventional, 87-octane fuel in New York Harbor widened 0.5 cent to 11 cents a gallon. The grade was at parity with futures on July 12. Prompt delivery fell 7 cents to $2.768 a gallon versus futures.

Fuyo Kaiun Co Ltd.’s Maersk Maya reached the hub July 22, according to AISLive Ltd. ship-tracking data compiled by Bloomberg. Mitsui OSK Lines Ltd.’s Emerald Express is expected to arrive July 27, the data show. The tanker, chartered by Valero Energy Inc., last docked in Milford Haven, U.K.

Sunoco Inc. (SUN) shut a fluid catalytic cracker in the Point Breeze section of its Philadelphia refinery today, IIR Energy said in a report. The unit is expected to be repaired and restarted within two weeks, according to the information provider.

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

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Bill Banker at bbanker@bloomberg.net

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