TC Energy Beats Profit Expectations on Stronger Demand

Canada's TC Energy beat analysts' estimates for quarterly profit on Tuesday, boosted by strong demand for its oil and gas transportation services after energy prices hit multi-year highs.

Metal-cladded pipes at TC Energy's Thornbury Pump Station in Alberta, part of the Grand Rapids Pipeline. (photo: TC Energy)

Pipeline operators have benefited from a pick-up in transport volumes, as oil prices surged about 50% in the quarter helped by a sustained recovery in fuel demand from the pandemic-driven lows.

The company said income from its Canadian natural gas pipelines increased 11.1% to C$389 million ($305.65 million) in the quarter, while its liquid pipelines business earned C$373 million, up 24.3% from last year.

The Calgary, Alberta-based pipeline operator also raised its quarterly dividend by 3.4% to 90 Canadian cents per common share.

The company said it was advancing commercially secured projects worth C$24 billion, and those worth about C$6.5 billion are expected to enter service in 2022.

Its comparable EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization) rose 3.5% to C$2.40 billion, topping estimates of C$2.38 billion, according to Refinitiv data.

During the quarter, TC recorded a C$60 million reduction in the impairment charge it had previously booked after scrapping the Keystone XL oil pipeline.

That resulted in the company posting net income attributable to common shares of C$1.12 billion, or C$1.14 per share, in the three months ended Dec. 31, down from C$1.12 billion, or C$1.20 per share, last year.

TC's Keystone XL oil pipeline, which was expected to carry 830,000 barrels per day of heavy crude from Canada's Alberta province to Nebraska in the United States, was scrapped in 2021 after the U.S. canceled a key permit.

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