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U.S. West Gasoline Strengthens as Supplies Fall to Seasonal Low

May 1 (Bloomberg) -- Spot gasoline on the U.S. West Coast surged against futures after the Energy Information Administration said regional stockpiles of the motor fuel dropped to a record low for this time of year.

Gasoline supplies in the West, known as the PADD 5 region, fell for the 12th straight week to 25.9 million barrels in the seven days ended April 26, the least since Aug. 10, and a seasonal low in data going back to 1990, according to the EIA, the Energy Department’s statistical arm.

California-blend gasoline, or Carbob, in Los Angeles strengthened 8 cents versus futures traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange to a premium of 15 cents a gallon at 4:25 p.m. East Coast time, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The same fuel in San Francisco advanced 6.5 cents to 16 cents a gallon above futures. San Francisco’s premium to the Los Angeles fuel shrank 1.5 cents to 1 cent a gallon, the narrowest level since March 21.

Conventional gasoline in Portland, Oregon, surged 14 cents versus Nymex futures to a premium of 34 cents a gallon, the highest level since October.

Low-sulfur diesel in Portland strengthened 0.25 cent to a premium of 3 cents a gallon against ultra-low-sulfur diesel futures on the Nymex.

California-blend, or CARB, diesel in San Francisco weakened by 1 cent to 6.75 cents a gallon below ULSD futures. The same fuel in Los Angeles strengthened by 0.12 cent to a discount of 3.63 cents a gallon versus futures.

Distillate fuel oil stockpiles on the West Coast climbed a fourth week to 12.4 million barrels, the EIA said.

The 3-2-1 crack spread of Alaska North Slope crude, Carbob in Los Angeles and CARB diesel in Los Angeles rose for a second day, gaining $2.10 to $15.98 a barrel at 4:27 p.m. New York time. The spread, a rough indicator of refinery margins, is down 45 percent from this year’s high of $29.09 a barrel on Feb. 5.

To contact the reporter on this story: Lynn Doan in San Francisco at ldoan6@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dan Stets at dstets@bloomberg.net

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