Diesel Futures Strengthen as Motiva Refinery Reduces Unit Rates
Ultra-low-sulfur diesel futures strengthened as the U.S.’s largest refinery, Motiva Enterprises LLC’s plant in Port Arthur, Texas, was said to be operating several units at reduced rates during repairs.
Futures rose as much as 0.7 percent. Motiva’s 600,000-barrel-a-day site will operate four hydrotreaters and three lube units at reduced rates while a sulfur recovery unit remains shut for repairs after its reactor caught fire Aug. 12, according to a person familiar with operations at the plant.
“Motiva’s generally geared toward distillate production,” said Carl Larry, president of Oil Outlooks & Opinions LLC in Houston. “This coming as refinery maintenance is going to start up in October and even September is putting pressure on the distillate market.”
Ultra-low-sulfur diesel for September delivery rose 1.64 cents, or 0.5 percent, to $3.0995 a gallon on the New York Mercantile Exchange at 9:54 a.m. Trading volume was 22 percent above the 100-day average.
Gasoline for September delivery rose 0.47 cent to $2.9722 a gallon on the Nymex on trading volume that was little changed from the 100-day average.
Pump prices, averaged nationwide, fell 0.2 cent to $3.538 a gallon, Heathrow, Florida-based AAA said today on its website. Prices are 18.2 cents below a year ago.
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