Marathon Petroleum earnings down $800 million

The Marathon Ashland Petroleum refinery in Texas City, Texas.
The Marathon Ashland Petroleum refinery in Texas City, Texas.

Revenues and income dipped substantially this quarter for Ohio-based Marathon Petroleum Corp., the nation’s third-largest refiner, as the two-year-old oil price crash and corresponding gas glut hit refiners’ bottom lines.

Marathon, which has substantial operations in the Houston area, reported on Thursday third-quarter earnings of $145 million, or 28 cents per share, down more than $800 million, or 77 percent, from the same period last year.

Revenues fell by $2 billion, or 11 percent, to $16.6 billion. Expenses fell by more than $1 billion, to $16 billion, but couldn’t keep pace.

Marathon executives attributed the revenue slump to more expensive crude oil and lower fuel margins. Gasoline profits at the Marathon company Speedway, for example, fell to $17.73 per gallon in the third quarter, a loss of $3.73 or 17 percent over the same period last year.

“Despite a challenging quarter, we remain optimistic as we move forward into 2017, given the signs of market rebalancing and sustained strong demand,” said Marathon Chairman, President and Chief Executive Gary Heminger.

The company also included a $267 million impairment charge this quarter, due to withdrawal of regulatory applications for the Sandpiper Pipeline project.

The company included a $267 million impairment charge this quarter, due to withdrawal of regulatory applications for the Sandpiper Pipeline project.

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