Big Story 10

Los Angeles gasoline tumbles, San Francisco firms

(Reuters) - West Coast refined products markets were mixed on Tuesday, as a refinery returned to normal operations in Southern California while an upset at a Bay-area facility supported prices in the central part of the state.

Prompt Los Angeles CARBOB fell sharply on Tuesday but January activity was relatively muted. It was pegged between a 47-cent and 55-cent a gallon premium to the NYMEX, down from a 64-cent premium the day prior.

Prices fell sharply on news that Tesoro had resumed normal operations at a gasoline-producing unit at the Carson portion of its refinery near Los Angeles. The Wilmington portion continues to undergo unplanned maintenance.

February Los Angeles CARBOB traded at a 37-cent, 39.5-cent and 41-cent a gallon premium to the NYMEX.

San Francisco CARBOB rose on news that Tesoro’s 166,000 barrel-per-day Golden Eagle refinery in Martinez had experienced an upset over the weekend which resulted in several units shutting down. On Monday, the refiner said it was in the process of resuming normal operations.

January CARBOB traded at a 37.5-cent a gallon premium to the NYMEX RBOB contract, up roughly 2.5-cents from where it had been pegged in the past few weeks.

In the Pacific Northwest, gasoline prices fell roughly 7 cents to a 13-cent a gallon premium to the NYMEX.

Distillate markets were mixed on Tuesday. Los Angeles jet fuel strengthened by roughly 3 cents, trading at a 3-cent a gallon premium to the NYMEX heating oil contract. CARB diesel also firmed by nearly 2 cents to a 3-cent a gallon premium to the futures market.

In the Pacific Northwest, low-sulfur diesel prices were stronger, at a 5-cent a gallon premium to the NYMEX, up roughly 2.5 cents from the prior day.

February NYMEX RBOB futures fell by 3.4 cents to close at $1.2567 a gallon on Tuesday. The front-month heating oil contract was down 0.11 cents to $1.1253 a gallon.

Reporting by Liz Hampton in Houston; Editing by Cynthia Osterman