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Buckeye's Q2 results miss expectations despite contributions from VTTI stake

Buckeye Partners LP on Aug. 4 posted $112.7 million, or 80 cents per unit, of net income attributable to the partnership's unit holders in the second quarter of 2017, declining from $140.5 million, or $1.07 per unit, in the year-ago quarter.

The S&P Capital IQ consensus normalized EPS estimate for the second quarter was $1.

Due to the units issued to partly fund its acquisition of a 50% stake in VTTI BV, Buckeye Partners' diluted weighted average number of units outstanding grew to 141.5 million units, from 131.2 million units in the prior-year period.

Second-quarter total revenue increased to $810.2 million, from $777.1 million in the corresponding quarter last year. Total adjusted EBITDA rose to $269.2 million, compared to $256.6 million in the prior-year period. Distributable cash flow amounted to $170.4 million, up from $159.8 million in the year-ago quarter.

Coverage ratio for the most recent quarter was lower at 0.95x, representing $179.4 million in distributions, compared to the prior-year period's 1.15x, representing $159.8 million in distributions.

Adjusted EBITDA improved due to a full-quarter contribution from the 50% interest in VTTI, but Buckeye's global marine terminals segment suffered a decline in capacity utilization as a long-term customer exited from one of its facilities. Results in the domestic pipelines and terminals and merchant business segments were negatively affected by higher integrity and project-related spending, as well as weaker market conditions.