By BEN LEFEBVRE
Phillips 66 will decide by this summer whether to sell its refinery in Belle Chasse, La., CEO Greg Garland said late Tuesday.
Phillips 66 and other refiners are rearranging their geographic footprint to take advantage of a boom in US oil and natural gas production that has scrambled the refining map.
Refineries with access to new, discounted oil in the US midcontinent have prospered, while coastal refineries have seen profit margins decline.
Phillips 66 agreed in April to sell its refinery in Trainer, Pa., to Delta Air Lines, while Sunoco shuttered its refinery in Marcus Hook in December.
Both plants depended on coastal crude, prices of which were as much as $20 more than their inland alternatives.
Phillips 66 has considered a sale of its Alliance refinery in Belle Chasse since December 2011, but is now rethinking the prospect amid falling prices for Light Louisiana Sweet crude oil, Garland said.
LLS, as the crude is known, is the benchmark crude oil in the Gulf of Mexico.
"Our view of that refinery has increased," Garland said during an investors conference. "We think LLS will become an advantaged crude."
Dow Jones Newswires
Editor's note: The Alliance refinery has 247,000 bpd of capacity, making it the 19th largest in the US, according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA).