Oil rises most in a month on projected gasoline supply decline

Refinery Outages

Hess said yesterday it has partially restored power at the 70,000-barrel-a-day Port Reading refinery. Full power is needed to complete an assessment, the company said.

“Gasoline supply is going to be tight in the next couple of days,” said Chris Barber, a senior analyst at Energy Security Analysis Inc. in Wakefield, Massachusetts. “It’s a short-term thing.”

About 76 percent of gas stations in the New York metropolitan area had gasoline yesterday, up from 73 percent on Nov. 4, according to an Energy Department survey.

Sandy, the biggest Atlantic storm in history, prompted six refineries with a capacity of 1.17 million barrels a day to shut or operate at reduced rates, the department said. Three refineries in Pennsylvania, Delaware and New Jersey have returned to operation and Philadelphia Energy Solutions’ 335,000-barrel-a-day plant in Philadelphia was producing at reduced rates yesterday.

U.S. Election

The next president will need to address a so-called fiscal cliff of more than $600 billion in tax increases and spending cuts that take effect in 2013 unless Congress can reach a budget compromise.

U.S. oil production has jumped 36 percent since January 2009 on rising output from shale formations in states including North Dakota, Texas and Oklahoma. Total output rose to 6.67 million barrels a day in the week ended Oct. 26, the most since 1995, according to the Energy Department.

“Whether Romney is president or Obama, the shale play is still producing a lot of oil,” Barber said. “Production is not the issue.”

Output will average 6.85 million barrels a day next year, up 8.2 percent from this year, the Energy Department said in the monthly Short-Term Energy Outlook report today. It was forecast to reach 6.33 million this year, 12 percent more than 2011.

Electronic trading volume on the Nymex was 496,325 contracts as of 2:34 p.m. Volume totaled 477,577 contracts yesterday, 8.2 percent below the three-month average. Open interest was 1.61 million.

Bloomberg News

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