Bloomberg News

Gulf Coast Gasoline Weakens as BP Texas City Starts Cat Cracker

January 23, 2012

Jan. 23 (Bloomberg) -- Gulf Coast gasoline weakened for a fourth day after BP Plc started a fluid catalytic cracker at the Texas City refinery in Texas.

The startup of the No. 1 FCCU may cause the plant to flare gases through today, the company said in a Jan. 22 filing with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.

The discount for conventional, 87-octane gasoline in the Gulf Coast widened 0.25 cent to 3.25 cents a gallon versus futures traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange at 12:10 p.m., according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Prompt delivery fell 0.49 cent to $2.7495 a gallon.

The Texas City refinery can process 475,000 barrels of feedstock a day, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

The catalytic cracker tripped offline at 11:23 a.m. Jan. 20 “due to the loss of a blower,” BP said in a separate filing with the commission.

Chicago gasoline weakened to the lowest level in almost three years on rising inventories in the region.

The discount for conventional, 87-octane gasoline in Chicago increased 2 cents to 31 cents a gallon versus futures. It’s the largest discount since March 4, 2008.

Gasoline inventories in the Midwest, known as the Padd 2 region, rose 2.3 percent last week to 54.7 million barrels, the Energy Department reported yesterday. Supplies have climbed six of the past seven weeks to the highest level since Feb. 25.

--Editors: David Marino, Charlotte Porter

To contact the reporter on this story: Paul Burkhardt in New York at pburkhardt@bloomberg.net.

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


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