Gasoline gained on speculation U.S. inventories fell as refineries shut units for seasonal maintenance and unplanned repairs.
Futures rose as Energy Information Administration will probably report today that gasoline stockpiles declined 750,000 barrels, according to the median estimate of 10 analysts in a survey by Bloomberg. Refinery rates fell 0.9 percentage point to 91.6 percent, the survey showed. Gasoline is down 11 percent this month as driving season ended and refiners switch to making winter-grade fuel, which uses cheaper blending components.
“It’s the time of year when we look for refinery utilization to be in the low 80s, not the low 90s,” said Addison Armstrong, director of market research at Tradition Energy in Stamford, Connecticut. “The market has sold off hard and technically overdone to the downside so it’s not surprising to see a little bit of firming.”
Gasoline for October delivery rose 2.39 cents, or 0.9 percent, to $2.6831 a gallon at 10:01 a.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange on trading volume that was 40 percent above the 100-day average. Prices are down 4.6 percent this year and 2.5 percent in the third quarter.
The EIA is scheduled to report inventories at 10:30 a.m. in Washington. Supplies of distillate fuel, including heating oil and diesel, dropped 925,000 barrels and crude stockpiles fell 1 million barrels, according to the survey.
The industry-funded American Petroleum Institute reported yesterday that gasoline inventories rose 341,000 barrels and distillate supplies increased 485,000 barrels.
Pump prices, averaged nationwide, fell 1.4 cents to $3.447 a gallon, 36.3 cents below a year ago, Heathrow, Florida-based AAA said today on its website.
Ultra-low-sulfur diesel for October delivery rose 1.61 cents, or 0.5 percent, to $2.9771 a gallon on trading volume was 23 percent above the 100-day average. Futures have dropped 2.2 percent this year and are up 3.4 percent in the third quarter.
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