Independent Refiner 3Q 2012 Earnings Summary | RefinerLink

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Independent Refiner 3Q 2012 Earnings Summary

By Steve Pagani

Jan 26, 2013

Collectively 8 Independent refiners earned $4.7 Billion dollars in the 3rd quarter 2012 with each refiner continuing to capitalize on discounted feedstocks and location advantages.                


Third quarter results for the U.S. Independent refiner continued the themes from the previous quarters of 2012 (1Q & 2Q).  The common themes for the Independent refiner were capitalizing on discounted U.S. mid continent crude oil feedstock and returning profits to the business and shareholders.

With 75% of 2013 completed it has been a banner year for most of the Independent refiners despite challenges in the U.S. economy.  Nearly all of the Independent refiners that Refinerlink covers increased total margin and $/bbl margin from the 2nd Quarter 2012. 

Leading the pack in gross margin per barrel in the 3rd quarter were CVR and Holly.  

Both refiners continue driving down feed costs by securing discounted mid-continent crude. 



Turnaround season has started up with several refiners struggling with operating expense due to turnaround activities.  Western’s operating expense had the unfortunate position as the highest of the pack with turnarounds at their Gallup and El Paso refineries.  Marathon also lagged the pack with higher than average operating expenses.




Leading the pack in low operating expense were Alon and Tesoro.  Both refiners continue to show operational disciple by consistently leading the pack in 2013 with lowest opex.  


Valero's 3rd quarter results

continued an unimpressed trend for the San Antonio based refiner.  They consistently rank near the top of the group in operating expense $/bbl and near the bottom in gross margin per barrel. The announcement of the closer of the Aruba refinery in the Caribbean came as no surprise. 





The new big dog in the Independent refiner club, Phillips 66 continued to overwhelm its independent competitors with sheer magnitude while earning $1.6 B (that’s BILLION, say it with sly smile it’s more fun that way).  Phillips 66 boasted in the third quarter that 63% of its crude slate was advantaged, while that’s an impressive number, the same or higher percentage could probably be claimed by CVR, Holly, and Western.   

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