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UPDATE 1-California gasoline pump prices poised to break record
2012年10月4日 / 晚上10点28分 / 5 年前

UPDATE 1-California gasoline pump prices poised to break record

By Nichola Groom
    LOS ANGELES, Oct 4 (Reuters) - Pump prices in California
soared this week as key Golden State refineries were disrupted
at a time of low inventories, putting prices on track to break a
record set in the summer of 2008.
    The state average for a gallon of regular gasoline jumped to
$4.315 on Thursday, 18.2 cents higher than last week and 49
cents higher than a year ago, according to AAA data.
    At a 76 gas station in Santa Monica, property developer
Binky van Bilderbeek, 39, said he was shocked.
    "Going up by 20 cents is remarkable. Shocking to be honest,"
said van Bilderbeek, who drives a Ford F-150 pickup truck. "If
it goes to more than $5 a gallon I'll have to seriously consider
getting a hybrid truck."
    A Costco Wholesale Corp gas station in Marina del
Rey was closed on Thursday due to supply issues, a security
guard there said. Costco could not be reached for comment.
    In recent weeks, California refineries have dropped
production in anticipation of switching over to a "winter blend"
of gasoline next month.
    At the same time, a power outage at Exxon Mobil Corp's
 Torrance, California refinery on Monday and a shutdown
of the crude distillation unit at Chevron Corp's 
Richmond, California refinery contributed to the tight supplies.
    Phillips 66 said a planned maintenance was under way
at its 120,200 barrel-per-day (bpd) San Francisco-area Rodeo
refinery.
    Chevron also said a pipeline that carries 85,000 barrels per
day of crude oil from the state's Central Valley to refineries
in the San Francisco Bay area has been closed since
mid-September due to the presence of elevated organic chloride
levels in the crude stream.
    "It's a series of unfortunate events," said Tom Kloza, chief
oil analyst for Oil Price Information Service, which compiles
the price data for AAA. "This is not something that is going to
last for months. This is something that is going to last for
days or weeks."
    Still, Kloza said it was likely that the record California
average gasoline price of $4.61 a gallon, set in June of 2008,
would be broken.
    "We are looking at the highest California prices ever," he
said in an interview.
    The California Energy Commission said in a statement that it
had increased monitoring of the gasoline market and was advising
consumers to combine trips, shop around for gas and keep their
vehicles tuned up with properly inflated tires.
    At a Chevron station in the Brentwood section of Los
Angeles, the price for regular gasoline went up 20 cents a
gallon overnight.
    "My car is a gas guzzler, it's sucking me dry," realtor
Marty Halfon said as he filled up his 1992 Mercedes. "I'm in
real estate, I live in my car. I'm held hostage. LA doesn't have
public transportation and the problem is you have to drive
everywhere you go. So what do you do? Stay home?"
    Prices in the Los Angeles spot market for October-delivery
gasoline reached a record $1.75 a gallon on Thursday over NYMEX
RBOB gasoline.
    Valero Energy Corp on Thursday said it was
temporarily withdrawing from the Los Angeles spot refined
products market to assure supplies to its branded and unbranded
retail stations the company supplies.

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