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Gulf Coast Gasoline, Diesel, Strengthen After Refinery Issues

Gulf Coast gasoline and diesel rose after refineries reported maintenance and an electrical interruption, raising speculation that production may be slowed.

Petroleo Brasileiro SA’s Pasadena refinery in Texas shut a crude unit for “corrective” maintenance through Aug. 19, Sophie Gates, a company spokeswoman in Houston, said in an e-mail yesterday. Exxon Mobil Corp. expects production at its Beaumont, Texas, refinery to be affected after a power failure caused multiple unit upsets, Kathleen Jackson, a Beaumont-based spokeswoman for Exxon, said in an e-mail yesterday.

The discount for conventional, 87-octane gasoline in the Gulf Coast narrowed 2.25 cents to 13 cents a gallon versus futures traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange at 1:57 p.m., according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Prompt delivery fell 2.11 cents to $2.9096 a gallon.

The premium for ultra-low-sulfur diesel at the hub rose 0.32 cent to 8.25 a gallon versus Nymex heating oil futures.

Power has been restored and the 345,000-barrel-per-day Beaumont plant is resuming normal operations, Jackson said. She didn’t immediately respond to questions in an e-mail today about whether operations were fully restored at the plant.

The discount for conventional gasoline to be blended with ethanol, or CBOB, in New York Harbor, narrowed 1 cent to 1.13 cents a gallon.

Hess Corp. reported an emissions violation at its Port Reading refinery in New Jersey, according to a filing with state regulators.

The violation was because of a “non-operational” malfunction, the filing yesterday showed.

The 70,000-barrel-a-day plant is conducting minor maintenance that has no impact on operations, the company said in an e-mailed statement.

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