Gasoline Jumps to Three-Month High on U.S. Inventory Decline

Gasoline jumped to a three-month high after a report showed that stockpiles of the motor fuel and crude tumbled last week.

Futures advanced as much as 1.7 percent. The industry-funded American Petroleum Institute reported yesterday gasoline supplies fell 3.5 million barrels and crude oil stockpiles declined 9 million last week, according to a person familiar with the data. The Energy Information Administration will report today that gasoline supplies rose 1 million barrels, according to the median of 11 analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg.

“This is on the back of the API stats showing a far more than expected draw in crude oil inventories and an unexpected draw in gasoline,” said Andy Lipow, president of Lipow Oil Associates LLC in Houston.

August-delivery gasoline gained 4.02 cents, or 1.4 percent, to $2.9662 a gallon at 9:45 a.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange on trading volume that was 27 percent above the 100-day average. Prices touched $2.9766, the highest intraday price since April 3.

West Texas Intermediate crude for August delivery on the Nymex rose $1.76 to $105.29 a barrel, after touching a 14-month high of $105.62.

Crack Spreads

Gasoline’s crack spread versus WTI narrowed 7 cents to $19.29 a barrel. The fuel’s premium over Brent jumped $1.11 to $16.19.

The EIA, the Energy Department’s statistical arm, is scheduled to report last week’s inventories at 10:30 a.m. in Washington.

Pump prices, averaged nationwide, rose 1.8 cents to $3.501 a gallon, Heathrow, Florida-based AAA said today on its website. That’s the highest price since June 28 and biggest one-day increase since May 17.

“It’s clear the recent price increases for crude oil are beginning to reach consumers at the pump,” Michael Green, a spokesman for AAA in Washington, said in a e-mail today.

Ultra-low-sulfur diesel, or ULSD, for August delivery rose 1.41 cents, or 0.5 percent, to $2.9998 a gallon on trading volume that was 20 percent below the 100-day average. Prices touched $3.0043, the highest intraday price since April 4.

ULSD’s crack spread versus West Texas Intermediate crude fell $1.17 to $20.70 a barrel. The premium over Brent gained 1 cent to $17.60.

The EIA will probably report that distillate inventories rose 1 million barrels, according to the survey. The API reported an increase of 2.8 million barrels.

To contact the reporter on this story: Barbara Powell in Dallas at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dan Stets at

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