February 4, 2015 / 11:32 PM / 4 years ago

Ethanol demand remains 'robust,' margins 'volatile' -Green Plains

NEW YORK, Feb 4 (Reuters) - Biofuels manufacturer Green Plains Inc said on Wednesday that ethanol demand remains robust in the United States and abroad, even as the industry faces volatile margins and pressure from lower energy prices.

The biofuels manufacturer, based in Omaha, Nebraska, said it operated close to full capacity during the fourth quarter. It reported net income of $42.2 million for the quarter, compared with $25.5 million in the fourth quarter of 2013.

U.S. ethanol margins have been “volatile” so far in 2015, but domestic and export demand remains “robust,” the company’s president and chief executive officer, Todd Becker, said in a statement.

Revenue was $829.9 million for the quarter, compared with $712.9 million a year earlier, the company said.

The jump in earnings came in a quarter when ethanol producers boosted output due to high margins. Those margins have since come under pressure due as ethanol prices have fallen since early December, under pressure from a slide in crude oil prices. (Reporting by Chris Prentice; Editing by Leslie Adler)

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