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Valero (VLO) Gears Up for Q2 Earnings: What's in the Cards?

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Valero Energy Corporation (VLO - Free Report) is set to report second-quarter 2021 results on Jul 29, before the opening bell.

In the last reported quarter, the leading refiner beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate for the bottom line on significant improvement in refining margins and product demand. Notably, Valero Energy surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in each of the last four quarters, the average being almost 16%, as shown in the chart below.

Valero Energy Corporation Price and EPS Surprise

Valero Energy Corporation Price and EPS Surprise

Valero Energy Corporation price-eps-surprise | Valero Energy Corporation Quote

Let’s see how things have shaped up prior to this announcement.

Trend in Estimate Revision

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for second-quarter earnings per share of 27 cents has witnessed three downward revisions and no upward revision in the past 30 days. The estimated figure suggests an improvement of 121.6% from the prior-year reported number.

The consensus estimate for second-quarter revenues of $22.7 billion indicates a 117.9% jump from the year-ago reported figure.

Factors to Consider

The rolling out of coronavirus vaccines at a massive scale has possibly made scope for more people to step out for work and leisure. Thus, demand for refined petroleum products has possibly recovered in the June quarter. With refining contributing the most among all operating segments of Valero – a leading refiner in the United States – increased demand for gasoline, diesel fuel, heating oil and jet fuel is likely to have aided the company’s total throughput volumes.

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for the total refining throughput volumes is pegged at 2,755 thousand barrels per day (MBbls/d), indicating an improvement from the year-ago quarter’s 2,321 MBbls/d. As such, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for refining margin per barrel of throughput is pegged at $7.36, suggesting an increase from $5.10 in the year-ago quarter.

Although there has likely been an improvement in throughput volumes, the rapidly spreading coronavirus variant is expected to have hindered the pace of its refining business recovery.

Earnings Whispers

Our proven model does not indicate an earnings beat for Valero Energy this time around. The combination of a positive Earnings ESP and a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), 2 (Buy) or 3 (Hold) increases chances of an earnings beat. That is not the case here as you will see below.

Earnings ESP: The company’s Earnings ESP is -39.51%. This is because the Most Accurate Estimate is pegged at earnings of 16 cents and the Zacks Consensus Estimate stands at 27 cents per share. You can uncover the best stocks to buy or sell before they’re reported with our Earnings ESP Filter.

Zacks Rank: Valero Energy currently carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell).

Stocks That Warrant a Look

Here are some firms in the energy space that you may want to consider as these have the right combination of elements to post an earnings beat in the upcoming quarterly reports:

Enterprise Products Partners LP (EPD - Free Report) has an Earnings ESP of +0.58% and a Zacks Rank of 3. It is scheduled to report second-quarter results on Jul 28. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Ovintiv Inc. (OVV - Free Report) has an Earnings ESP of +14.49% and a Zacks Rank #1. The firm is scheduled to release earnings on Jul 27.

ConocoPhillips (COP - Free Report) has an Earnings ESP of +8.25% and is a Zacks #1 Ranked player. The company is scheduled to release second-quarter results on Aug 3.