Ethanol Discount to Gasoline Widens for First Time in a Week

Ethanol weakened against gasoline for the first time in a week as corn fell on speculation that improved forecasts for planting weather will boost supplies.

The spread, or price difference, widened 1.11 cents to 39.09 cents a gallon, snapping ethanol’s four days of gains against the motor fuel. Corn for May delivery fell 1 percent to $6.5175 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade at 8:41 a.m. local time. Declining temperatures later this week probably won’t make it cold enough to damage most crops, Commodity Weather Group said today in a report.

“It’s a little bit of the corn market being under pressure,” said Mike Blackford, a consultant at INTL FCStone in Des Moines, Iowa. “A better weather forecast for planting season is pressuring corn, and that’s spilling over into ethanol.”

Denatured ethanol for May delivery fell 3.5 cents, or 1.4 percent, to $2.387 a gallon in Chicago. Prices have gained 9 percent this year.

Gasoline for May delivery slid 2.39 cents, or 0.9 percent, to $2.7779 a gallon on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract covers reformulated gasoline, made to be blended with ethanol before delivery to filling stations.

To contact the reporter on this story: Dan Murtaugh in Houston at dmurtaugh@bloomberg.net

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

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