Los Angeles Gasoline Weakens as Refineries Seen Increasing Rates

Spot gasoline in Los Angeles fell against futures for a second day as BP Plc and Tesoro Corp. were said to be preparing equipment for restart at their Southern California refineries after planned maintenance turnarounds.

Tesoro’s 97,000-barrel-a-day Wilmington refinery was expected to finish the work last week, while BP’s 266,000-barrel-a-day Carson refinery was scheduled to flare gases through Feb. 16 related to the startup of a fluid catalytic cracker and alkylation unit, according to people familiar with operations at the plants.

The premium for California-blend gasoline, or Carbob, in Los Angeles narrowed 0.5 cent to 29.5 cents a gallon versus futures traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange at 1:32 p.m. East Coast time, data compiled by Bloomberg show. Prompt delivery in Los Angeles dropped 4.05 cents to $3.3183 a gallon.

Carbob in San Francisco lost 1 cent to 8.5 cents a gallon above futures. Prompt delivery there declined 4.55 cents to $3.1083 a gallon.

Tina Barbee, a Tesoro spokeswoman at the company’s headquarters in San Antonio, said by e-mail today that the Wilmington plant was still performing planned maintenance.

San Francisco Carbob weakened 0.5 cent to a discount of 21 cents a gallon against the fuel in Los Angeles. The gap reached a record 32.5 cents a gallon on Jan. 14.

California-blend, or CARB, diesel in Los Angeles slipped

0.5 cent to an 8.5-cent-a-gallon premium to Nymex heating oil futures. The same fuel in San Francisco gained 1 cent to a premium of 11.5 cents a gallon.

In Portland, low-sulfur diesel climbed 0.5 cent to 5 cents a gallon above heating oil futures. Conventional, 84-octane gasoline there weakened 1 cent to 2 cents a gallon above gasoline futures.

Portland 84-octane gasoline’s discount to Los Angeles Carbob lost 0.5 cent to 27.5 cents a gallon. The spread reached a record 75.5 cents a gallon on Oct. 4.