Plains All American earnings up on strong demand

Plains All American Pipeline reported Wednesday a 15 percent jump in net income attributable to Plains for the fourth quarter, bringing in $320 million for the three-month period.

The company’s earnings totaled $1.09 billion for the full year, up 13 percent from $966 million for all of 2011.

Earnings per limited partner unit were 69 cents for the quarter, and $2.40 for the year.

The partnership reported earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of $541 million for the fourth quarter and $1.95 billion for the year.

Plains All American Pipeline, based in Houston, is a publicly traded master limited partnership, involved in transporting, storing and marketing crude oil, refined products, liquefied petroleum gas and other natural gas products.

Chairman and CEO Greg L. Armstrong pointed to the company’s investment in new projects as part of a plan for strategic growth.

“Our fee-based transportation and facilities segments delivered results in line with or ahead of guidance throughout the year as demand for our services remained strong and new capital projects were placed into service,” he said in a statement. “Our supply and logistics segment substantially exceeded our guidance on the strength of increasing volumes, attractive margins, favorable market conditions and solid executions.”

The company announced a $500 million deal in December with U.S. Development Group to buy five crude oil rail terminals in three of the nation’s most active shale plays: the Eagle Ford in South Texas, the Bakken in North Dakota, and the Niobrara in Colorado. The pipeline company also got an existing unloading terminal in St. James, La., and one under development in Bakersfield, Calif., as part of the deal.

Armstrong said investments made over the past few years, combined with $1.1 billion of planned growth capital for 2013, will contribute to strong growth this year and beyond.

Plains All American had previously announced it would increase fourth-quarter distributions to $0.5625 per unit, up 9.8% over last February’s distribution.

The company released earnings after the stock market closed for the day; it ended down 29 cents, at $52.40 a unit.