Gasoline Futures Slip a Second Day, Retail Prices Continue Climb

Gasoline futures retreated in New York while retail prices in the U.S. climbed for the 34th consecutive day.

March-delivery gasoline declined 1.2 percent. Prices rose 2.5 percent last week on concern that refinery shutdowns would tighten supply. The retail price for regular gasoline, averaged nationwide, rose 1.8 cents to $3.766 a gallon, the highest level since Oct. 15, AAA said today on its website.

“Gasoline was overvalued,” said Andy Lipow, president of Lipow Oil Associates LLC in Houston. “Although we are in the midst of a heavy turnaround season, refinery maintenance season is peaking over the next few weeks and supplies are expected to increase in March.”

March gasoline declined 3.67 cents to $3.0845 a gallon at 9:32 a.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange on volume that was 13 percent above the 100-day average for the time of day.

Prices at the pump have gained every day since Jan. 17, advancing 47.3 cents.

“You’re going to see retail gas prices run up the rest of this week as they catch up with the rise in futures and then they should taper off,” Lipow said.

The motor fuel is the second-best performer this year on the Standard & Poor’s GSCI index of 24 materials with an 11 percent gain. Cotton has gained the most of any commodity.

Heating oil for March delivery rose 0.15 cent to $3.1821 a gallon on the exchange on volume that was 19 percent below the 100-day average.

To contact the reporter on this story: Barbara Powell in Dallas at bpowell4@bloomberg.net

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

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