Bloomberg News

Gasoline Declines on Concern Greek Debt Accord Talks Stalled

January 31, 2012

Jan. 30 (Bloomberg) -- Gasoline fell for the first time in five days on concern that Greek bailout negotiations will falter, leading to a default and weakening the region’s economy.

Futures declined amid speculation that fuel demand will drop if the crisis isn’t resolved. European Union leaders have battled with Greece over a second aid program. Greece fended off German-led calls for a European overseer to take command of its budget after its deficits outstripped targets for two years.

“You are seeing a huge selloff in the euro and that is affecting U.S. stocks and everything else,” said Fred Rigolini, vice president of Paramount Options Inc. in New York.

Gasoline for February delivery fell 5.61 cents, or 1.9 percent, to settle at $2.8707 a gallon on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Futures have risen 6.9 percent this month.

EU leaders are also awaiting a European-International Monetary Fund assessment of Greece’s current needs and the status of its economic reforms, Merkel told reporters before an EU summit in Brussels today.

The euro fell for the first time in six days against the dollar, losing 0.6 percent in New York. A weaker euro and stronger dollar reduce the investment appeal of commodities.

February-delivery heating oil dropped 1.86 cents, or 0.6 percent, to settle at $3.0518 a gallon on the exchange. Futures are up 4 percent this month.

Regular gasoline at the pump, averaged nationwide, rose 1 cent to $3.429 yesterday, according to AAA data. The price has increased 4.6 percent in January.

--With assistance from Aaron Clark in New York. Editors: Margot Habiby, Bill Banker

To contact the reporter on this story: Barbara J Powell in Dallas at bpowell4@bloomberg.net

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


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