Mai said gasoline prices had been rising before the storm in part from higher consumer confidence and consumer spending that was expected to increase demand. Mai said AAA doesn't expect the gasoline increases to crimp travel plans for the Labor Day weekend. The group expects more than 386,000 Oklahomans to travel this weekend, an increase of 4 percent from last year.
Meanwhile, a refinery fire in Venezuela over the weekend appeared to contribute to fluctuations in U.S. gasoline futures, although Hurricane Isaac's approach appeared to have a bigger effect.
Gasoline futures rose 7.7 cents, or 2.5 percent, to $3.155 Monday in New York, on concerns about supply disruptions from the storm and the closed Venezuelan refinery. Tuesday, U.S. gasoline futures fell 2.87 cents to $3.126 as traders waited to see how big an impact Isaac has on U.S. refineries, and as Venezuelan officials said the damaged Amuay refinery would restart in two days.
Benchmark oil rose 86 cents Tuesday to finish at $96.33 per barrel.
The Associated Press
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TULSA — Syntroleum Corp. shut down the Dynamic Fuels plant in Louisiana as Hurricane Isaac approached Tuesday. The facility, which is operated as a joint venture with Tyson Foods, has completed a normal shutdown as its hurricane procedures were implemented, the company said. Also Monday, Oklahoma City energy companies SandRidge Energy Inc. and Gulfport Energy Corp. said they had shut in operations and relocated workers ahead of the storm.
From Staff Reports