MPC, VLO, or PSX: Who Had Better Refining Yields in Q3 2018?

Maitali Ramkumar - Author

Nov. 14 2018, Updated 10:30 a.m. ET

Refining yield comparison

The refining yield shows the quantity and quality of various refined products produced. In the third quarter, Valero Energy’s (VLO) gasoline production stood at 47% of its total refined products produced, higher than Marathon Petroleum’s (MPC) and Phillips 66’s (PSX) gasoline productions. Valero’s distillate production stood at 38%, leaving its other production at only 15%, the lowest compared to MPC and PSX.

Usually, heavier refined products fetch lower realizations than lighter ones such as gasoline. Therefore, the higher the production of lighter products by a refiner, the higher its revenue.

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Phillips 66’s gasoline as a percentage of its total production stood the lowest. Gasoline constituted 44% of the company’s total refined products produced in the third quarter. Phillips 66’s distillate production stood at 38% in the quarter. Comparatively, Marathon Petroleum’s refining operations yielded 45% gasoline and 33% distillates in the third quarter.

However, if we consider absolute production levels, Valero produced the highest gasoline volumes in the third quarter, followed by Phillips 66 and Marathon Petroleum.

Total production trend in the third quarter

While Marathon Petroleum and Valero’s total production rose YoY (year-over-year) in the third quarter, Phillips 66’s output fell. Valero had a higher rise compared to Marathon Petroleum. Valero’s total refined products production rose 7% YoY to 3,139 Mbpd (thousand barrels per day). The steep rise was due to lower throughputs in the third quarter of 2017 as a result of Hurricane Harvey.

Comparatively, Marathon Petroleum’s output rose 1% YoY to 2,073 Mbpd in the third quarter. However, Phillips 66’s production fell 2% YoY to 2,193 Mbpd in the third quarter.

If we consider absolute production levels, Valero’s stood the highest in the third quarter.


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