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FINDLAY, Ohio – Marathon Petroleum Corp.'s income from its Speedway LLC convenience store division declined during the first quarter of 2014. The retail subsidiary earned $58 million for the quarter, down $9 million from the $67 million it earned during the first quarter of 2013.
Speedway also saw a drop from the final quarter of 2013, when it reported earnings of $83 million.
Part of the decline was blamed on severe winter weather conditions in the Midwest, according to company officials. "The cold weather impacted all aspects of Speedway's business," said Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Don Templin.
Other factors included a decrease in the gasoline and distillate gross margin, along with higher operating expenses due to an increase in store count, the company explained. These factors were partially offset by a higher merchandise margin.
Same-store merchandise sales at Speedway grew 5.3 percent during Q1, while same-store gasoline sales saw a slight decline of 0.7 percent.
Overall, Marathon Petroleum reported first-quarter earnings of $199 million, down from the $725 million it reported during the same quarter one year ago and the $633 million it reported for the fourth quarter of 2013.
Still, Marathon Petroleum President and CEO Gary R. Heminger praised the efforts of employees during the difficult quarter.
While "adverse weather conditions throughout the quarter created a challenging work environment across our integrated operations, I am especially pleased with the execution by our refining organization during the extensive turnaround work, and the extraordinary efforts put forth by all of our employees to reliably deliver products to our consumers," he said.