Valero, Marathon Beat Profit Estimates as Refining Margins Rise
Two of the biggest independent oil refiners in the United States beat Wall Street profit estimates on Thursday as greater processing of cheap, light crude from West Texas helped boost margins.Shares of Findlay, Ohio-based Marathon Petroleum gained as much as 7 percent to $79.43, while those of San Antonio, Texas-based Valero Energy Corp rose 4 percent to touch $113.53.Most refiners in the United States process heavy crude from countries such as Venezuela or Canada into diesel, gasoline and other products, but the U.S. shale revolution has added millions of barrels of very light crude to the supply mix.After reporting a doubling of profit in the second quarter…
Valero Boosts Imports of Venezuelan Oil as Sanctions Loom
U.S. refiner Valero Energy Corp this year boosted its imports of Venezuelan crude ahead of U.S. sanctions over the country's disputed presidential election and as other customers received less of the OPEC-member's exports, according to Thomson Reuters trade flows data.Venezuelan oil production has tumbled to a multi-decade low this year, cutting shipments to buyers in the United States and elsewhere and worsening a severe economic recession. Its crude exports averaged 1.19 million barrels per day (bpd) in the January-April period, 28 percent less…
Venezuela's Crude Sales to U.S. Fall in July
Venezuela's crude exports to the United States declined to 494,400 barrels per day (bpd) in July after rising the prior three months, showing the impact of asset seizures against state-run oil firm PDVSA, according to Thomson Reuters data.July was the first month crude exports fell below 500,000 bpd since the months of January through March.U.S. oil producer ConocoPhillips in May began seizing PDVSA's overseas assets in an attempt to collect on a $2 billion arbitration award. Its legal actions have left PDVSA with no access to most of its Caribbean terminals…
U.S. Gulf Coast Energy Infrastructure Shuttered by Harvey
Tropical Storm Harvey made landfall in Louisiana early on Wednesday after hammering Texas, threatening more infrastructure in the heart of the U.S. oil and natural gas industry. The U.S. National Hurricane Center said Harvey came ashore just west of Cameron, Louisiana, and was expected to weaken to a tropical depression by Wednesday evening. Numerous refineries, terminals, drilling platforms and other infrastructure have shut. At least 4.2 million bpd of refining capacity was offline, or more than 22 percent of total U.S. capacity, based on company reports and Reuters estimates. The Gulf is home to nearly half of U.S. refining capacity.
Retail Gasoline Prices Surge in Harvey's Choppy Wake
Nearly a quarter of U.S. refining capacity out; Motiva down for two weeks; Corpus Christi starts to reopen. Retail U.S. gasoline prices hit two-year highs and global shipping routes were scrambled as the nation's largest refiners remained shut on Friday, even as Harvey was losing strength. Major fuel pipelines feeding the U.S. Northeast and Midwest have been either closed or severely curtailed, prompting shortages in some areas and dramatic spikes in wholesale prices. The storm has roiled global fuel markets and tankers carrying millions of barrels of fuel have been rerouted to the Americas to avert shortages. European refining margins hit a two-year high on a surge in exports.
USCG, EPA Cleaning up a Dozen Texas Chemical Spills after Harvey
The U.S. Coast Guard and the Environmental Protection Agency are working with Texas state regulators to clean up oil and chemicals spilled from a dozen industrial facilities after flooding from Hurricane Harvey, authorities said. The spills came from oil refineries, fuel terminals and other businesses, but EPA spokeswoman Terri White said it was not possible to provide an estimate for the amounts spilled. "Initial reports were based on observation," White said. Refineries owned by Valero Energy Corp in Houston, Motiva Inc in Port Arthur, and Exxon Mobile Corp in Baytown, were among the facilities that had reported spills, according to White.
Oil/Chemical Spills from Harvey Are Big, but Dwarfed by Katrina
More than 22,000 barrels of oil, refined fuels and chemicals spilled at sites across Texas in the wake of Hurricane Harvey, along with millions of cubic feet of natural gas and hundreds of tons of other toxic substances, a Reuters review of company reports to the U.S. Coast Guard shows. The spills, clustered around the heart of the U.S. oil industry, together rank among the worst environmental mishaps in the country in years, but fall far short of the roughly 190,000 barrels spilled in Louisiana in 2005 after Hurricane Katrina - the last major storm to take dead aim at the U.S. Gulf Coast. Harvey slammed ashore in Texas on Aug.
Colonial Pipeline Allows Port Arthur Refiners to Ship Fuel after Harvey
Colonial Pipeline, the largest fuel system in the United States, said on Monday that Port Arthur, Texas refiners can use their own pumps as a temporary solution to get gasoline and other products into its main lines. Flow rates on Colonial's lines, which supply more than 3 million barrels a day of fuel to the populous U.S. east coast, have been sharply reduced after Hurricane Harvey caused massive floods and damaged supply points, including at Port Arthur. The Port Arthur facility connects directly to Total and Valero's refineries in Jefferson County, Texas.
Harvey Shores Up U.S. Refiner Margins
Surging prices for gasoline and diesel in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey spiked margins to a more than two-year high, helping two big U.S. refiners record quarterly profits on Thursday that blew past Wall Street estimates. Marathon Petroleum Corp said its refining system was relatively spared during the hurricane season, with some short, preventive shutdowns. "We set multiple refinery production records during the quarter, including record crude throughput in the month of August," Marathon Petroleum President Donald Templin said on a conference call. Marathon's refining and marketing gross margins rose to $14.14 per barrel from $10.67 last year.
Refinery State Lawmakers Stump for Biofuel Meeting
Nine U.S. senators from states that have oil refineries sent a letter to President Donald Trump on Thursday urging changes to the country's biofuels policy and asking for a meeting to discuss the issue. The letter reflects growing tensions between refiners that oppose the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard - a law requiring them to blend increasing amounts of ethanol into the nation's fuel each year - and the Midwest corn lobby that supports it. The Trump administration bowed to rising pressure from Midwest lawmakers last week, assuring them in letters and phone calls that it would ditch proposals, supported by the refining industry, to overhaul the biofuels policy.
Trump Plans to Meet Oil Industry Reps on US Biofuel Policy
U.S. President Donald Trump has agreed to meet with representatives of the oil refining industry and their legislative backers to discuss the nation's biofuels program, according to two sources briefed on the matter. The White House meeting could set the stage for negotiations over possible legislation to overhaul the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard - a 2005 law that requires refiners to blend increasing amounts of biofuels like ethanol into the nation's gasoline each year, the sources said, asking not to be named. While the regulation would be a boon to the Midwest corn belt…
Valero Beats Street on Better Refining Margins
U.S. refiner Valero Energy Corp's fourth-quarter profit beat Wall Street estimates on Thursday, as the company benefited from higher margins. San Antonio, Texas-based Valero said operating income from its refining business, its largest revenue generator, rose 52.2 percent to $982 million, helped by higher distillate and gasoline margins. Smaller rival Marathon Petroleum Corp earlier reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit as its refining and marketing margin rose 16 percent. Analysts have said U.S. refiners are set for a robust 2018 as they are expected to benefit the most from a tighter oil market due to OPEC-led production curbs and favorable tax reforms.
Refining Margins Push Phillips 66 Q4 Profits
U.S. refiner Phillips 66 on Friday beat analysts' quarterly profit estimates, largely helped by higher refining margins. The company said realized refining margins rose to $8.98 per barrel in the fourth quarter, from $6.47 a year earlier. Excluding one-time items, the company earned $1.07 per share, beating analysts' average estimate of 86 cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. Phillips 66's profit surged in the quarter as the refiner benefited from a $2.74 billion gain due to the recent changes in the U.S. tax law. Refiners are likely to outshine other energy segments in 2018 as they benefit from a surge in U.S.
Big Corn, Big Oil Square off in White House Biofuels Meeting
U.S. President Donald Trump gathered with senators and Cabinet officials on Tuesday to discuss ways to lower the cost of the nation’s biofuels policy to refiners, a meeting pitting Big Corn against Big Oil. The meeting reflects rising concern in the White House over the current state of the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), a law requiring refiners to mix biofuels such as corn-based ethanol into their fuel, which has increasingly divided two of Trump's most important constituencies. A refining company in the key electoral state of Pennsylvania last month blamed the regulation for its bankruptcy.
Trump Wades Deeper into Biofuel Debate
U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday will gather rivals from the oil and corn industries for the second time this week as the administration seeks elusive common ground on reforms to the nation's controversial biofuels law. The meetings come amid rising concern in the White House over the current state of the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), a law requiring refiners to mix biofuels such as corn-based ethanol into their fuel, which has increasingly divided two of Trump's most important constituencies. A refining company, Philadelphia Energy Solutions (PES) in the key electoral state of Pennsylvania, last month blamed the regulation for its bankruptcy.
U.S. Refinery Workers Push Biofuels Reform
A delegation of workers from U.S. oil refining companies that oppose the nation's biofuels policy will converge on Washington on Wednesday to try to convince lawmakers to find a way to lessen the regulation's costs without hurting corn farmers. The trip, organized by the United Steelworkers union, marks the latest move in a battle between Big Oil and Big Corn over the fate of the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard - a law requiring corn-based ethanol in gasoline that the refining industry says is costing it hundreds of millions of dollars a year. More than two dozen workers from refiners Valero Energy Corp…
Venezuela's Crude Sales to U.S. Falls to 15-year Low in February
Venezuela's crude exports to the United States declined in February to a 15-year low as oil production continues falling and President Donald Trump's administration weighs new sanctions on the OPEC country, according to Thomson Reuters data. Financial sanctions imposed by the United States in August on Venezuela and state-run oil firm PDVSA have created obstacles for selling crude cargoes to U.S. refiners, shrinking the number of customers PDVSA has in the U.S. In February, PDVSA and its joint ventures sent 21 cargoes to the United States - half the number it exported in recent years - with a total of 378,643 barrels per day (bpd) of crude, according to Reuters' Trade Flows data.
Higher Refining Margins Boost Valero Profits
Valero Energy Corp posted a better-than-expected first quarter profit as the independent U.S. refiner benefited from higher refining margins. The company said refining margins, or the difference between buying of crude and average selling price of refined products, rose 6.1 percent to $2.21 billion in the first quarter ended March 31. Valero has a diverse set of refineries that allows it to take advantage of volatile crude price differentials and process lower-quality feedstock into high value refined products. Net income attributable to company shareholders rose to $469 million, or $1.09 per share, from $305 million, or $0.68 per share, a year earlier.
Valero Energy Profit Beats on Higher Refining Margins
Valero Energy Corp posted a better-than-expected first quarter profit as the independent U.S. refiner benefited from higher refining margins.Valero has a diverse set of refineries that allows it to take advantage of volatile crude price differentials and process lower-quality feedstock into high-value refined products such as gasoline and distillates."Our refineries are well-situated to take advantage of discounted heavy sour and domestic sweet crude oils versus Brent and to meet the growing demand for refined products in Latin America," Chief Executive Joe Gorder said in a statement.Valero said refining margins…
Marathon Creates Top U.S. Refiner with Andeavor Acquisition
Marathon paying $152/share to create biggest independent refiner; Andeavor assets include pipelines, refineries, gas stations. Marathon Petroleum Corp said on Monday it would buy rival Andeavor for more than $23 billion, forming a company that would leapfrog Valero Energy Corp as the largest independent U.S. refiner by capacity. Shale oil fields have pushed U.S. crude production to record highs and industry experts argue operations that have capacity to refine light crude like Andeavor will be better positioned to take advantage of the boom. Andeavor also runs refineries in Alaska…