Valero Matches Lower Earnings Estimate

Oil refineryValero Energy Corp. (NYSE: VLO) reported second-quarter 2013 results before markets opened this morning. The oil refiner posted diluted earnings per share (EPS) of $0.85 on revenues of $34.03 billion, compared with EPS of $1.50 on revenues of $34.66 billion in the second quarter of 2012. The consensus estimate called for EPS of $0.93 on revenues of $30.18 billion.

Earlier this month, Valero warned that earnings would drop more than 30% in the quarter, blaming the collapse on the disappearance of cost-advantaged crude supplies, the federal renewable fuels standard, higher natural gas costs and maintenance at some of the company's refineries.

Refining throughput for the quarter totaled 2.6 million barrels a day, down 52,000 barrels a day from the same period a year ago.

Valero's CEO said:

Valero performed well financially given the margin environment and maintenance activities. ... We are evaluating the formation of a master limited partnership for our logistics assets, and we are also evaluating potential investments that leverage Valero's existing assets to upgrade cost-advantaged natural gas and natural gas liquids into higher value products.

Ethanol income for the quarter totaled $95 million, up from just $14 million in the first quarter and only $5 million in the second quarter of 2012.

The spin-off of Valero's retail business was completed in May, reducing total operating income by $133 million compared with last year, but refining margins and operating income are what really took a beating. Margins fell year-over-year from $10.63 to $9.26 a barrel and operating income per barrel fell from $5.64 to $3.88.

Valero's shares are up about 2%, at $35.95 in a 52-week range of $22.540 to $44.76. Thomson Reuters had a consensus analyst price target of around $44.90 before today's report.

Filed under: Commodities & Metals Tagged: VLO
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