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Valero Swings To 2Q Profit As Revenue Rises

Wall Street Journal - Jul 27, 2010

Valero Energy Corp. (VLO) rebounded from a prior-year loss during the second quarter as revenue from selling petroleum products rose and costs fell.

The San Antonio refiner's results topped analysts' estimates and halted a year's worth of losses suffered as a recessionary drop in demand sent gasoline and diesel prices sharply lower, even as crude oil prices rallied. The second quarter is expected to prove to have been a bright one across the refining sector as fuel demand perked up. The sustainability of those earnings is an open question, however, as gasoline pump prices have started to slip and because margins typically tend to drop in the third quarter as the summer driving season comes to a close.

"It's great to be profitable again," Valero Chairman and Chief Executive Bill Klesse said in the earnings release. He added that margins so far during the current quarter remain at "relatively good levels," though they're down from the second quarter in most of its markets.

"We need people to get back to work, but we still think the third quarter is going to be OK for us," Klesse said during a conference call, noting a "reasonable" level of exports of diesel and other distillate fuels, cost cuts and the relative cheapness of the heavier grades of crude the company predominantly uses as feedstock for its fuels.

Read Full Article from Wall Street Journal

- Posted: 2010-07-27 15:39:46

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