Pipeline Operator Enbridge Beats Profit Targets on Higher Transport Volumes

(Reuters) — Pipeline operator Enbridge on Friday beat third-quarter profit estimates, benefiting from transporting higher volumes of oil and other liquids.

Low U.S. inventory levels and increased exports as buyers sought alternatives to Russian oil since the Ukraine conflict started last year, have boosted demand for oil that kept pipelines running and lifting profits for oil and gas transportation companies.

Calgary, Alberta-based Enbridge moves about 30% of the crude oil produced in North America, and nearly 20% of the natural gas consumed in the United States.

"In our Liquids business, we continue to see record utilization across the system, including the Mainline," CEO Gregory Ebel said in a statement.

Mainline system transports light and heavy crude oil, natural gas liquids, and refined products from Edmonton, Alberta to various markets in Canada and the U.S. Midwest.

Quarterly core profit from company's liquids pipelines rose 15.5% to C$2.25 billion ($1.64 billion) from a year earlier, helped by a over 1% rise in Mainline volumes to 3 million barrels per day (bpd).

U.S.-listed shares of Enbridge rose 1.5% in premarket trading.

Enbridge is also betting big on U.S. gas. In September, the company announced a $14 billion bid for Dominion Energy's three utility assets, to create North America's largest gas utility platform. The deal is expected to close in 2024.

"We are confident these acquisitions will strengthen our ongoing dividend growth profile and deliver strong total shareholder returns," CEO Ebel said.

The company reaffirmed its annual financial outlook for adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization of C$15.9 billion to C$16.5 billion, and distributable cash flow of C$5.25 to $5.65 per share.

It posted an adjusted profit of 62 Canadian cents per share for the quarter ended Sept. 30, compared with the average estimate of 60 Canadian cents per share, according to LSEG data.

($1 = 1.3735 Canadian dollars)

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