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Gasoline Futures Decline as Maintenance Ends; Spreads Weaken

April 02, 2013

Gasoline fell a third consecutive day as refinery maintenance lessened. Crack spreads and calendar spreads weakened.

May gasoline’s premium to June narrowed 0.66 cent to 1.28 cents a gallon amid speculation that supplies will rise as spring maintenance ends. The May gasoline crack spread versus West Texas Intermediate slipped $1.39 to $31.80 a barrel and the premium to Brent dropped $1.69 to $17.49. Philadelphia Energy Solutions restarted units late last week at the largest refinery along the U.S. East Coast.

“We have more refineries coming out of maintenance and gasoline is not being helped by technical factors,” said Amrita Sen, chief oil market strategist at Energy Aspects Ltd., a research company in London.

Gasoline for May delivery fell 4.75 cents, or 1.5 percent, to $3.0542 a gallon at 10:05 a.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Trading volume on the Nymex was 109 percent above the 100-day average.

Gasoline traded below the 20-day, 30-day and 40-day moving averages. Prices have fallen 6.5 percent from the 2013 intraday high of $3.2672 reached on March 11.

“We’re getting more in line with reality,” said Phil Flynn, senior market analyst at Price Futures Group in Chicago. “You have weaker crude prices, weaker demand and you’re going to see a lot of production coming online shortly.”

Ultra-low-sulfur-diesel for May delivery rose 1.68 cents to $3.0855 a gallon on volume that was 36 percent above the 100-day average 10:09 a.m. ULSD traded at a 3.13-cent premium to gasoline.

Gasoline at the pump, averaged nationwide, rose 0.3 cent to $3.637 a gallon, AAA said today on its website. Prices are 28.8 cents below a year earlier after falling in March for the first time in 10 years, according to AAA data.

To contact the reporter on this story: Barbara Powell in Dallas at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dan Stets at

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