Storms disrupt Midwest gasoline production; prices rise

24 April 2013 17:51  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--The national average price for a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline in the US has risen the past few days, mostly on gains in the Midwest region, but remains below the year-ago level, automobile organisation AAA said in its Fuel Gauge Report made available on Wednesday.

The average retail price of regular unleaded gasoline is at $3.52/gal, which is 35 cents/gal less than the same time in 2012.

After declining for 45 of 51 days the national average has now increased for three straight days, according to the AAA.

Motorists in most states are paying less than one month ago, some Midwestern states have had higher prices in the past week following supply concerns from refinery issues and heavy rains in the region.

“The recent storms and resulting power outages provided the catalyst for higher retail prices in the Midwest, however analysts had warned that the region was susceptible to price increases as regional refineries had yet to undergo maintenance and make the transition to summer-blend gasoline production,” AAA’s Michael Green said.

The production switch begins at retail stations on 1 June, but refineries begin making summer blend gasoline in March and April to meet the 1 May production deadline.

“During this switch regional production is reduced and supplied markets are more susceptible to unexpected disruptions, as was the case during the recent storms in the Midwest,” said Green.

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By: Anna Matherne

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