Gasoline Futures Advance to Four-Month High; Crack Spread Widens

Gasoline advanced to a four-month high in New York after an industry report showed declining oil and refined product supplies. The March crack spread on Nymex widened.

Futures gained as much as 1 percent. Oil rose 40 cents to $97.91 in New York at 9:35 a.m. after the American Petroleum Institute said crude inventories at the Cushing, Oklahoma, storage hub declined by 1.12 million barrels to 50.2 million last week and U.S. gasoline stockpiles fell 810,000 barrels. The March gasoline crack spread widened 67 cents to $31.27 a barrel.

“The linchpin here is going to be the crude oil number at Cushing,” Stephen Schork, the president of Schork Group Inc. in Villanova, Pennsylvania, said by phone. “That could be supportive of crude oil prices and of course if crude oil prices rally, gasoline prices are going to follow.”

Gasoline for March delivery rose 2.2 cents, or 0.7 percent, to $3.0723 a gallon on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Volume was 81 percent above the 100-day average at 9:57 a.m. in New York.

March-delivery heating oil slipped 0.59 cent to $3.2303 a gallon on volume that’s 15 percent above average.

Gasoline at the pump, averaged nationwide, rose 1.4 cents to $3.618 a gallon, AAA said on its website today. Prices are the highest since Oct. 23, and 10.5 cents above a year ago.

To contact the reporter on this story: Eliot Caroom in New York at ecaroom@bloomberg.net

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

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