Phillips Q1 results – beats, restarts buyback, flags improved refining environment

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Phillips (NYSE: PSX) reported Q1 results ahead of the market open Friday, beating expectations and announcing a restart of the company’s share repurchase program. Chairman Garland said, “we saw substantially improved financial results from our operations in March and expect continued strong performance in the second quarter.” Phillips (PSX) is the third US refiner to report Q1 earnings, with Valero (VLO) and PBF (PBF) also flagging an improved macro environment:

  • Earnings – the company reported $ 1.32 in adjusted first quarter earnings, against Street expectations for $ 1.27.
  • Cash flow – Phillips (PSX) generated $ 1.3b in free cash flow, excluding the impact of net working capital, or ~ 3.3% of the company’s market cap.
  • Capital allocation – management used free cash flow to reduce debt, paying down $ 1.5b of debt in April; the board also restarted the company’s share repurchase program, with $ 2.5b existing under authorization.

Phillips (PSX) remains a relatively low-risk way to gain exposure to an improved refining environment. However, with a double-digit annual free cash flow yield, 4% + dividend and new share repurchase program, Philips (PSX) could catch up with “high beta” refining peers in coming quarters.

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