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Enbridge Profit Increases as Demand for Crude Transport Gains

Enbridge Inc., the largest transporter of Canadian crude to the U.S., said third-quarter profit increased as demand to move oil on its pipeline network exceeded its capacity.

Net income rose to C$421 million ($403 million), or 51 cents a share, from C$189 million, or 24 cents, a year earlier, the Calgary-based company said in a statement on Marketwired today. Excluding one-time items, per-share profit missed the 36-cent average of 14 analysts’ estimates compiled by Bloomberg.

Rising production from Alberta’s oil sands has increased demand for infrastructure to move the crude to refiners. Enbridge has C$36 billion worth of projects through 2017, including new and reversed conduits, Chief Executive Officer Al Monaco said on Oct. 1 at an investor meeting in Toronto.

“We forecast higher earnings from liquids pipelines primarily attributable to higher results from the regional oil-sands system and incremental contribution from the Seaway expansion,” Robert Kwan, an analyst at RBC Capital Markets, wrote in an Oct. 22 note to clients.

The company’s pipeline network is Canada’s biggest for liquids, shipping more than 2.2 million barrels a day on 24,738 kilometers (15,375 miles) of pipe, according to its website.

The company is also proposing a conduit called Northern Gateway to transport bitumen to Canada’s Pacific Coast, allowing oil-sands producers to access markets in Asia.

Enbridge rose 0.3 percent to C$45.59 yesterday in Toronto. The release came before the start of regular trading in North American markets. The shares have 16 buy, two hold and two sell ratings from analysts, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

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