BENGALURU: Indian Oil Corp Ltd on Wednesday reported a fourth-quarter profit that beat analysts' estimates by a huge margin as higher crude prices boosted the inventory value of the country's biggest refiner.
The state-owned company reported a net profit of 87.81 billion Indian rupees (US$1.20 billion) for the quarter ended March 31, compared with a loss of 51.85 billion rupees a year ago.
Analysts were expecting the refiner to log a profit of 55.06 billion rupees, according to Refinitiv IBES data.
Inventory gains are booked when oil prices rise by the time a company processes oil into fuel. Brent crude prices jumped about 23per cent during the March quarter.
Revenue rose 18per cent to 1.64 trillion rupees.
IOC's April-to-March 2021 average gross refining margin - the difference between the cost of crude oil processed and the selling price of refined products - jumped to US$5.64 per barrel against US$0.08 a barrel a year ago.
The company, along with subsidiary Chennai Petroleum, controls about a third of India's 5 million-barrels-per-day (bpd) refining capacity.
(US$1 = 73.1400 Indian rupees)
(Reporting by Nallur Sethuraman in Bengaluru; Editing by Devika Syamnath)