Gasoline rose along with crude as gains for the U.S. economy and Chinese manufacturing, signaling stronger fuel demand.
Futures advanced as much as 1.7 percent and West Texas Intermediate crude climbed to the highest level in a week. U.S. jobless claims fell last week to a five-year low, the Labor Department said. China’s Purchasing Manager’s Index increased to 50.2, above the level of expansion. The Federal Reserve said yesterday it would maintain its $85 billion monthly bond buying.
“Gasoline and diesel are being dragged up by the crude market, supported by the economic news and a better-than-expected jobs report,” said Andy Lipow, president of Lipow Oil Associates LLC in Houston.
Gasoline for September delivery rose 3.58 cents, or 1.2 percent, to $3.0321 a gallon at 9:50 a.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Trading volume was 2.7 percent above the 100-day average.
Applications (INJCJC) for unemployment insurance payments declined by 19,000 to 326,000 in the week ended July 27, the fewest since January 2008, from a revised 345,000 the prior week. The median forecast of 50 economists surveyed by Bloomberg called for 345,000.
Pump prices, averaged nationwide, rose 0.3 cent to $3.63 a gallon, Heathrow, Florida-based AAA said today on its website. Prices are 10.9 cents higher than a year ago.
Ultra-low-sulfur diesel for September delivery gained 2.8 cents, or 0.9 percent, to $3.083 a gallon on trading volume that was 5.1 percent above the 100-day average.
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