NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM) is considering a possible multibillion-dollar expansion of its 344,600 barrel-per-day Beaumont, TX refinery that could make it the nation's largest by 2020, sources say, Reuters reports.
The deliberations at Exxon are reportedly focused on the possible addition of a third crude distillation unit, and its size would determine how much capacity would increase.
Though many U.S. refiners have been incrementally adding capacity, Exxon's move could be the first major U.S. refinery investment since the sudden rise of shale production opened up a new era of bumper profits for the sector, Reuters said.
Shares of Exxon Mobil are down -0.56% to $103.70 in pre-market trade.
TheStreet Ratings team rates EXXON MOBIL CORP as a Buy with a ratings score of A-. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:
"We rate EXXON MOBIL CORP (XOM) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its attractive valuation levels, good cash flow from operations, increase in stock price during the past year and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins."
Highlights from the analysis by TheStreet Ratings Team goes as follows:
- Net operating cash flow has increased to $15,103.00 million or 11.11% when compared to the same quarter last year. Despite an increase in cash flow, EXXON MOBIL CORP's average is still marginally south of the industry average growth rate of 17.02%.
- Compared to where it was 12 months ago, the stock is up, but it has so far lagged the appreciation in the S&P 500. Turning our attention to the future direction of the stock, it goes without saying that even the best stocks can fall in an overall down market. However, in any other environment, this stock still has good upside potential despite the fact that it has already risen in the past year.
- XOM's debt-to-equity ratio is very low at 0.12 and is currently below that of the industry average, implying that there has been very successful management of debt levels. Despite the fact that XOM's debt-to-equity ratio is low, the quick ratio, which is currently 0.55, displays a potential problem in covering short-term cash needs.
- Regardless of the drop in revenue, the company managed to outperform against the industry average of 3.4%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 2.1%. The declining revenue appears to have seeped down to the company's bottom line, decreasing earnings per share.
- You can view the full analysis from the report here: XOM Ratings Report