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Los Angeles Gasoline Rises to Three-Month High on Planned Work

California-blend gasoline in Los Angeles jumped to the highest level against futures in more than three months on speculation that work at three oil refineries in the state will tighten supplies in the market.

Carbob in Los Angeles increased 11 cents, the largest rise since Aug. 26, to a premium of 30.5 cents a gallon against gasoline futures traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange at 4:40 p.m. East Coast time, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. That’s the widest spread for the fuel since Nov. 4.

San Antonio-based Tesoro Corp. may take a few more weeks than originally scheduled to finish maintenance at the Martinez refinery in Northern California, two people familiar with the plant’s operations said yesterday. BP Plc, based in London, will shut several units at the Carson refinery in Southern California for work next month, three people said Jan. 3.

Valero Energy Corp., based in San Antonio, is starting crude and coker units at the Wilmington refinery in Southern California following a maintenance turnaround, Bill Day, a company spokesman in San Antonio, said in an e-mail.

“Other units remain shut,” he said.

United Steelworkers members who work at Tesoro’s Kapolei refinery in Hawaii also rejected the company’s “last, best and final” offer on a new contract yesterday as negotiations at four other refineries stalled over benefits language, two people with direct knowledge of the talks said today.

Tesoro Disagreements

Tesoro has run into disagreements over benefits with unions at the plants in Kapolei; Martinez; Mandan, North Dakota; Salt Lake City, and Anacortes, Washington, the people said. Workers at the five plants, totaling 508,000 barrels a day in capacity, may strike if they don’t settle on new contracts.

“Kapolei voted down our offer,” Tina Barbee, a Tesoro spokeswoman in San Antonio, said in an e-mail. “Negotiations continue at all USW-represented Tesoro refineries, and we look forward to successful ratification of all agreements.”

The premium for Carbob in San Francisco rose 6 cents to 25.5 cents a gallon against gasoline futures, also the highest level since Nov. 4.

California-blend, or CARB, diesel in Los Angeles strengthened 1.38 cents to a premium of 2.13 cents to Nymex heating oil futures, the highest level in more than three weeks. San Francisco CARB diesel rose 0.75 cent to a premium of 1 cent against futures.

Conventional, 87-octane gasoline in Portland, Oregon, rose 2.5 cents to a discount of 7 cents versus gasoline futures.

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