Gasoline, Diesel Prices in U.S. West Coast Slip as Refiners Sell

Gasoline and diesel in the U.S. West Coast weakened for the first time in three days as refiners were seen selling on the spot markets and after fuel inventories in the region grew last week.

Gasoline supplies on the West Coast, or Padd 5, rose 4.6 percent to 27.1 million barrels in the week ended June 8, the highest level since April, the Energy Department said yesterday. Tesoro Corp. finished work at the 97,000-barrel-a-day Los Angeles refinery last week.

California-blend, or Carbob, gasoline in Los Angeles dropped 3.5 cents to 7 cents a gallon below futures traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange at 4:44 p.m., according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Carbob in San Francisco also slipped 2 cents to trade even with Los Angeles. Retail gasoline prices in Southern California tumbled 12.6 cents to $4.057 per gallon, AAA said in an e-mailed statement.

“This is the first time since the financial meltdown of 2008 that Southern California has experienced two consecutive weeks of double-digit gas prices declines,” said Jeffrey Spring, a Costa Mesa, California-based spokesman for the motoring group. “Prices have returned to levels not seen since mid-February because of the rapid drop in wholesale prices.”

California-blend, or CARB, diesel in Los Angeles slipped 0.25 cent to 4.13 cents a gallon above Nymex heating oil futures. The same fuel in San Francisco fell 1 cent to a 5.5-cent premium.

Low-sulfur diesel in Portland, Oregon, fell 1.5 cents to a premium of 8.5 cents a gallon above futures. Conventional, 87-octane gasoline in there tumbled 4 cents to 16 cent below New York gasoline futures.

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