Gasoline prices expected to continue to rise over Labour Day long weekend

Gas prices are on their way up in the Montreal area affected by the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey in the U.S

The closure of some refineries in the southern United States is reducing the supply and the start of the long weekend of Labour day will increase the demand.

The site's sources say prices in Quebec and B.C. jumped by several cents per litre since Thursday, when their provincial averages were just below $1.20 per litre.

The effects of hurricane Harvey are seeping across the border into Canada.

Motorists awoke to a hike of about five cents a litre on Friday, and can expect the price to rise another nine cents on Saturday, says petroleum analyst Dan McTeague. With this, two of the largest pipelines in the U.S. - the Colonial Pipeline, which feeds much of the Northeast U.S., and the Explorer Pipeline, which runs from Texas to Chicago - have signalled that they're severely limiting throughput due to a lack of product to transport, raising the possibility of shortages.

McTeague said how much the price actually jumped up works out to be closer to nine cents, but the message is the same.


According to McTeague, "Canadian gas prices rise faster and higher than anywhere else in the world".

Some analysts have speculated that it could take months for the fuel market to return to normal, based on records from previous hurricane outages, but Ervin said it's more likely to be a few weeks as it appears there's been less damage to refineries and pipelines. "With winter coming, winter gas is cheaper, so we should see prices go down a bit, at least back to what people are more used to".

On Thursday in NY, the price of a barrel of crude oil for delivery in October rose USA $1.27 at closing, to U.S. $47.23.

Compared to Thursday, the commodity price has already jumped more than six cents a litre in NY, meaning the increase in New Brunswick is likely to happen tonight.

TD Securities analyst Bart Melek said in a note Friday he expects crude oil prices to strengthen to above US$50 per barrel before the end of September as Houston refineries, ocean import facilities and pipelines gradually return to normal operations. "In Canada, we barely produce enough gasoline to meet our own needs".

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