LONDON, July 10 (Reuters) - Benchmark northwest European gasoline refining margins rose on Tuesday, supported by signs of stronger Asian demand, while Atlantic basin activity remained weak.
* Over 600,000 tonnes of gasoline have been booked to load in Europe with options to deliver on transatlantic routes in the past week, shipping data showed.
* But overall buying from the key U.S. East Coast market remained signifanctly lower for this time of year than in recent years, according to traders.
* A surge in U.S. refining output in recent months has led to a sharp rise in inventories in the country, dampening demand for imports, traders said.
* Asia’s naphtha crack edged up 1.8 percent to stay at a five-week high of $90.15 a tonne on Tuesday, supported by demand.
* Italy’s Milazzo oil refinery shut a crude distillation unit for maintenance that will last until Friday, a spokesman said.
* Three barges of Eurobob gasoline traded in the afternoon window at $733-$734 a tonne fob ARA. Total sold to Shell and Vitol.
* Elsewhere, 19,000 tonnes of Eurobob gasoline traded in a range of $728.50-$729 a tonne fob Amsterdam-Rotterdam, compared with $716-$722 a tonne the previous session. Total sold to Shell and BP.
* There were no deals on barges of premium unleaded gasoline.
* The August swap stood at $729 a tonne at the close, up from $722.50 a tonne.
* The benchmark EBOB gasoline refining margin rose to $8.944 a barrel, from $8.045 a barrel.
* Brent crude futures were up 88 cents at $78.76 a barrel at 1526 GMT.
* U.S. front-month RBOB gasoline futures were up 0.25 percent at $2.1539 a gallon.
* The U.S. RBOB refining margin RBc1-CLc1 was down 0.24 percent at $16.35 a barrel.
* BASF sold a cargo to BASF at $633 a tonne cif NWE. (Reporting by Ron Bousso Editing by Mark Heinrich)