Trump taps oil reserve to keep gas prices down after Harvey

Fuel costs have spiked but once more and are actually up about 24 cents a gallon since Hurricane Harvey struck Texas.

The nationwide common worth for a gallon of standard jumped practically 7 cents to $2.59 a gallon on Saturday, in keeping with AAA.

In Texas, the place Harvey devastated the Gulf Coast and shuttered refineries, the typical fuel worth has jumped 17 cents since Thursday. Costs in Texas spiked 10 cents on Friday and one other 7 cents on Saturday.

And worth spikes are much more extreme in another Southern states.

North Carolina costs jumped 9 cents in a single day and are up 34 cents over the past week. Georgia costs jumped practically 12 cents in a single day and are up about 38 cents for the week.

And it is not simply the south. New Jersey fuel was up practically 13 cents in a single day, and 30 cents since final week.

Fuel futures shot up greater than 10% Thursday, the final day of buying and selling for contracts that promised September supply of gasoline. Costs for the October futures early Friday had been barely decrease, suggesting merchants do not count on the upper costs to final. However there’ll probably be continued ache on the pump as refineries alongside the Texas Gulf Coast battle to get again on-line.

Related: Harvey certain to be one of most expensive natural disasters ever

“There is a fear now that many of the Texas refineries may very well be compromised for weeks moderately than days” stated Kloza.

He stated the nationwide common may get as excessive as $2.75 a gallon in a worst case situation.

Some refineries alongside the Texas Gulf Coast are within the strategy of coming again on-line, Kloza stated, notably within the Corpus Christi space. However he stated it’s going to be mid to late September earlier than it would all be up and operating.

“Restarting a refinery will not be like restarting a automotive. It is extra like restarting a garden mower that has been sitting in a shed for plenty of years,” he stated. “There’s loads of issues that may very well be mistaken.”

Almost 30% of the nation’s refining capability alongside the Gulf Coast has been shut or lowered operations attributable to flood waters related to the storm. Motiva’s huge Port Arthur refinery, the largest in the U.S., shut down on Wednesday attributable to “rising native flood circumstances,” whereas Valero (VLO) additionally closed its Port Arthur refinery on Wednesday.

Related: Harvey shuts down major fuel pipeline supplying East Coast

Earlier within the week ExxonMobil’s (XOM) Baytown Texas refinery, which is the second-largest within the nation, was shut down attributable to roof harm brought on by heavy rain.

The refinery shutdowns prompted the Colonial Pipeline to close a part of its operation from the Texas Gulf Coast early Thursday as a result of it would not have sufficient product to maneuver by the pipeline. The pipeline is essential to shifting gasoline, jet gasoline and different refined merchandise to factors alongside the East Coast from Florida to New Jersey.

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

CNNMoney (New York) First revealed September 2, 2017: 1:06 PM ET