U.S. oil prices rose on Tuesday and gasoline fell as the gradual restart of refineries in the Gulf of Mexico that were shut by Hurricane Harvey raised demand for crude and eased fears of a serious supply crunch.
Gasoline futures dropped 3.1 percent from their last close, to $1.6938 per gallon by 12:26 p.m. ET (1626 GMT), down from $2.17 on Aug. 31 and back to levels last seen before Harvey hit the U.S. Gulf Coast and its large refining industry.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures rose $1.52, or 3.2 percent, $48.81 barrel.
"Gasoline fell as refineries in Texas began to reopen," said William O'Loughlin, investment analyst at Rivkin Securities.