Ethanol Slides for Third Day on Concern Price May Entice Imports

Ethanol futures fell for a third day in Chicago on concern that higher prices for the biofuel would entice Brazilian imports.

Prices declined after an Energy Department report showed the U.S. imported 19,000 barrels a day of ethanol last week, compared with none a year ago. Refiners bought an average of 122,000 barrels a day from foreign sellers in the week ended Oct. 12, the highest amount since the agency began reporting weekly data on the additive in June 2010.

“There’s always the threat that Brazilian supply could come back into the market,” said Jerrod Kitt, an analyst at Linn Group in Chicago.

Denatured ethanol for November delivery declined 0.4 cent to $2.402 a gallon on the Chicago Board of Trade. Futures have gained 9 percent this year.

In cash market trading, ethanol was unchanged in New York at $2.47 a gallon, in Chicago at $2.40 and in the U.S. Gulf at $2.455, data compiled by Bloomberg shows. Ethanol on the West Coast added 0.5 cent to $2.55 a gallon.