Holly Energy Partners, L.P. (“HEP” or the “Partnership”) (NYSE-HEP) today reported financial results for the fourth quarter of 2012. For the quarter, distributable cash flow was $41.6 million, up $9.2 million, or 28.6% compared to the fourth quarter of 2011. Based on these results, HEP announced its 33rd consecutive distribution increase on January 24, 2013, raising the quarterly distribution from $0.4625 to $0.47 per unit, representing a 6% increase over the distribution for the fourth quarter of 2011. On January 16, 2013, HEP completed its two-for-one unit split. All per unit amounts in this earnings release have been adjusted to reflect the unit split.
Net income attributable to Holly Energy Partners for the fourth quarter was $27.0 million ($0.37 per basic and diluted limited partner unit) compared to $30.9 million ($0.51 per basic and diluted limited partner unit) for the fourth quarter of 2011. This decrease in earnings is due principally to a one-time positive crude oil pipeline settlement of $5.5 million with HollyFrontier in the fourth quarter of 2011, increased operating costs and expenses and higher interest expense. These factors were partially offset by increased volumes, earnings attributable to our November 2011 asset acquisition and annual tariff increases.
Commenting on the fourth quarter of 2012, Matt Clifton, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer stated, “We are extremely pleased with our financial results, particularly with the record levels of our distributable cash flow and EBITDA. EBITDA for the fourth quarter was $54.7 million, an increase of $5.0 million, or 10%, over last year’s fourth quarter."
“Increased domestic oil production has positively impacted the gross margins of the refineries we serve throughout our Midcontinent, Rocky Mountain and Southwest asset base. This has given our refinery shippers strong incentives to maximize their production levels, which correspondingly kept our pipeline and terminal utilization rates at historically high levels during the quarter. Additionally, increased oil drilling activity near our crude oil gathering pipelines in Southeast New Mexico should continue to raise the amount of oil we gather and transport on our New Mexico crude oil pipeline assets. These positive industry fundamentals have increased the financial contribution from our heritage assets while our tankage and terminals acquisition in November 2011 and our UNEV pipeline acquisition in July 2012 further contributed to our year over year growth in distributable cash flow,” Clifton said.