Fuel Fix

strike 2

Gasoline futures up on fear refinery strikes curtailing supplies, analysts say

Wholesale distributors appeared to be buying higher volumes of gasoline on fears they won’t be able to tap into supplies later on, pushing commodity prices higher, analysts said Monday as steelworker strikes continued at several U.S. oil refineries.  More »
In an effort to show support for ongoing labor negotiations, about 150 employees of Lyondellbasell Refinery in Houston fanned out in front of the plant late Wednesday afternoon. (Photo: Thomas B. Shea/For the Chronicle)

Union rally planned for downtown Houston Tuesday

The march is timed to coincide with LyondellBasell’s 10 a.m. fourth-quarter earnings call to investors and stock analysts.  More »
Gasoline prices have risen in the past week, but the motor club AAA projects regular will stay under $3 a gallon this year. (AP file photo/Paul Sakuma)

Gasoline’s new price streak points upward

Gasoline prices have risen over the past week, mostly because of seasonal factors that typically send the price up in the final weeks of winter.  More »
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(Photographer: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg)

Russian pipe maker OAO TMK laying off at Pennsylvania plants

The plants had about 750 workers combined before the layoffs and are two of 12 plants that are part of TMK IPSCO, part of the Russian firm’s American division.  More »
(Jerry Lara/San Antonio Express-News)

GE leads round of Texas oil layoffs with 330 jobs cut

It’s the latest sign the collapse of petroleum prices is forcing oil companies to jettison workers and adjust to much leaner profits. The U.S. benchmark oil price has halved since June.  More »
Phil McNabb of Oceaneering International shows off the WASP Atmospheric Diving System during the Offshore Technology Conference at Reliant Center in 2002. (Melissa Phillip/Chronicle)

Oceaneering to buy Louisiana ocean-mapping firm for $230m

The deal to buy Lafayette, Louisiana-based C&C Technologies will give Oceaneering access to technology that can map the ocean and survey marine construction for surface and subsea assets, which would boost utilization of its underwater vehicles.  More »
(Matthew Lloyd/Bloomberg)

Legal battles from 2010 spill to unfold in 2 U.S. courtrooms

On Monday, trial resumes in a federal district courtroom where BP and a minority partner in its ill-fated Macondo well are trying to fend off billions in Clean Water Act penalties.  More »
(JEFF PACHOUD/AFP/Getty Images)

How Americans are spending their windfall from cheap gasoline

Millions of Americans are benefiting from the collapse in gas prices, which Goldman Sachs Group Inc. equates to a tax cut worth as much as $125 billion.  More »
(AP Photo/Williston Herald, Jerry Burnes, File)

More oil jobs threatened as cheap crude persists

A growing number of workers are facing a new reality of unemployment.  More »
(LM Otero/AP)

Exxon cuts share buybacks as fourth-quarter profit slides

Exxon said it wouldn’t pull too far off the throttle given lower priced oil and gas, and executives said the company was willing to take on debt in order to hold up its dividend and to make the most of any opportunities the company saw amid collapsing crude prices.  More »
strike

Local union chapter and refiners far from deal, says union official

The gulf between local chapters of the union and Houston employers could complicate a deal to end the national strike that has had Steelworkers’s members picketing nine chemical plants and refineries across the U.S., five of which are in Houston.  More »
strike 2

Refinery strikes unlikely to move gasoline, oil prices

Steelworker strikes that began Sunday at seven U.S. oil refineries and two chemical plants have a slim chance of pumping up gasoline or crude prices dramatically in the near future, analysts say.  More »
(Bill Montgomery/Houston Chronicle)

Texans who don’t use enough power hit with penalty fees

Many Texans receive penalty fees on their electric bills for not using enough power.  More »
strike 1

Workers at three local refineries on strike

Workers at three area refineries and two other local facilities went on strike early Sunday after the Steelworkers union failed to reach a contract deal with industry negotiators.  More »
(AP Photo/Casper Star-Tribune, Robert Hendricks)

Government sells scandalized Teapot Dome oilfield for $45 million

Most of the easily accessible oil in the oilfield 35 miles north of Casper already has been tapped out since drilling resumed in the mid-1970s.  More »