Los Angeles Gasoline at Two-Week Low as Tesoro Completes Work

Spot gasoline in Los Angeles declined a second day against futures as Tesoro Corp. finished repairs at the Carson refinery in Southern California.

The 266,000-barrel-a-day Carson refinery, which Tesoro bought from BP Plc earlier this month, is “running normally” after planned maintenance, Tina Barbee, a spokeswoman at Tesoro’s headquarters in San Antonio, said by e-mail today.

California-blend gasoline, or Carbob, in Los Angeles, which began trading June 21 for July delivery, dropped 8 cents against futures traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange to a premium of 19.5 cents a gallon, the lowest level in two weeks, data compiled by Bloomberg at 4:10 p.m. New York time show. Prompt-delivery of the fuel declined 9.96 cents to $2.9221 a gallon.

Exxon Mobil Corp.’s 150,000-barrel-a-day Torrance refinery near Los Angeles planned to flare gases through June 22 related to scheduled maintenance on a unit, Gesuina Paras, an Exxon spokeswoman at the plant, said by e-mail June 21. The work was unrelated to the June 19 shutdown of the crude unit, she said.

Repairs on the crude unit at the Torrance refinery were expected to last one to two weeks, a person familiar with operations there said June 20. Other equipment at the refinery was running at about half of normal capacity during the work, the person said.

Carbob in San Francisco weakened 8 cents against futures to a premium of 15.50 cents a gallon, the lowest level in a week. The discount for San Francisco Carbob versus the same fuel in Los Angeles was unchanged at 4 cents a gallon.

Shell Martinez

The fluid catalytic cracker at Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s Martinez refinery in Northern California, a gasoline-producing unit that was taken out of service after a boiler trip on June 19, was expected to be down for five to six days, according to a filing from Contra Costa County regulators. All three boilers at the plant were shut after the upset, according to the filing.

Retail gasoline in California slipped 0.2 cent to $4.067 a gallon, Heathrow, Florida-based AAA, the nation’s largest motoring organization, said today on its website. Prices are up from $3.856 a gallon a year ago.

The premium for spot, conventional gasoline in Portland, Oregon, narrowed by 1 cent against gasoline futures to a premium of 15 cents a gallon. Portland gasoline’s discount to Los Angeles Carbob narrowed 7 cents to 4.5 cents a gallon, the smallest gap in almost three weeks.

The 3-2-1 crack spread of Alaska North Slope crude, Carbob in Los Angeles and CARB diesel in Los Angeles narrowed a third day, losing $4.18 to $17.60 a barrel at 4:12 p.m. New York time. The spread, a rough indicator of short-term refining margins, is down 46 percent from this year’s high of $32.74 a gallon reached on June 19.