HOUSTON, May 4 (Reuters) - Plains All American Pipeline LP
on Wednesday raised its profit forecast for the year by
3.4%, partly as higher oil and gas prices are expected to boost
production and volumes shipped on pipelines from the top U.S.
U.S. shale companies are ramping up output as crude prices
have climbed over $100 a barrel, and output is projected
to hit a record 5.1 million bpd in May, according to U.S.
government data, boosting volumes on pipelines.
The pipeline operator increased full-year adjusted earnings
guidance by $75 million to about $2.28 billion and expects its
Permian gathering volume to grow around 280,000 barrels per day
Plains said it added additional 45,000 barrels a day of
contracted short-term volumes to its Permian long-haul
"We expect U.S. shale production, led by the Permian, will
continue to be crucial to supplying and meeting global energy
demand," Chief Executive Officer Wilfred Chiang said on an
Crude oil pipeline tariff volumes rose 32% to average 7.2
million barrels per day, with Permian climbing 39%.
Still, earnings from its crude oil business fell 4% compared
with the year-ago quarter as the company sold its natural gas
storage facilities in August and registered gains a year earlier
from hedged power costs related to a winter storm.
Adjusted net income attributable to Plains rose 15% to $266
million, helped by higher prices for natural gas liquids and
increased fractionation spreads.
On a per unit basis, earnings fell 1 cent short of
Refinitiv IBES analysts' estimate of 32 cents per unit.
Plains also raised its annual common distribution by 15
cents to 87 cents per unit and said it repurchased $25 million
of units in the first quarter.
(Reporting by Arathy Somasekhar in Houston; Editing by Diane
Craft and Lisa Shumaker)