Fuel prices poised to rise due to Harvey

Fuel prices poised to rise due to Harvey

Fuel prices poised to rise due to Harvey

If people start hoarding gas, "that's going to make the problem worse, and prices shoot higher and the event will last longer, with more disruption and shortages", said Patrick DeHaan, an analyst with GasBuddy.com.

Benchmark U.S. gasoline futures RBc1 had surged more than 15 percent since the storm began. It's not just Texas, though; gas prices are rising across the U.S.

Average prices in Texas, the epicenter of the storm, rose more than 3 percent from Friday to Saturday, and are up 12 percent from a week ago.

United States gasoline futures this week briefly hit $1.91 a gallon, the highest since July 2015, after the outages.

"The Texas Gulf Coast [where Harvey made landfall August 25] alone is home to over 25% of USA refining capacity, and the US federal offshore [production regions] in the Gulf of Mexico accounts for almost 20% of total US crude oil production", the agency said.

New pipelines and rail capacity helped Canadian oil producers quadruple their exports to the Gulf Coast over the past four years, with the total reaching 412,000 barrels a day in May, Energy Department data show.

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Gas futures shot up more than 10% Thursday, suggesting that prices will keep climbing.

In Corpus Christi, Citgo Petroleum Corp said it was beginning to restart its 157,500-barrel-per-day (bpd) refinery, while Flint Hills Resources and Valero Energy Corp were also moving to restart their plants, sources said.

Refiner Motiva warned customers along the Colonial route to prepare for shortages, a source at a fuel distributor supplied by Motiva said on Friday.

Supplies from distant markets may not arrive soon enough to avert a crunch after the Colonial Pipeline, the biggest US fuel system, said it would shut part of its main lines to the Northeast. "It's essentially a rainy day fund", Tran said.

Motiva also announced that it is shutting down its Port Arthur refinery - the largest in the country - because of flooding, although some other refineries have been reopening.

A break in the same pipeline in September 2016 caused gasoline shortages and prices to spike about 20 cents a gallon in Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia.

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Firefighters have extinguished a large blaze at a building on Houston's west side that is surrounded by flooding from Harvey . Trump sent out an encouraging tweet to storm victims as Air Force One left Washington Saturday morning.

Motorists in Texas have been encountering increasing numbers of "No Gas" signs when they try to fill up, evidence of the battering Hurricane Harvey delivered to the Gulf Coast's huge energy complex.

The expected USA crude build-up today widened the WTI discount to Brent to US$5.64 per barrel, its widest in over two years.

Offshore facilities will be inspected once the storm has passed.

Wednesday, the Commerce Department said US economic growth had sped up to a three percent annual rate in the second quarter (April, May and June) which is faster than first estimated.

Oklahoma-based QuikTrip diverted gasoline deliveries to its store in a similar way a year ago in metro Atlanta, where it has about 133 stores, after the Alabama pipeline spill.

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