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Calumet improves quarterly profit despite sales hit

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Calumet Specialty Products LP on Wednesday morning posted a profit of $3.9 million in the third quarter, bouncing back from a $12.5 million loss in the same period last year.

The Indianapolis-based refiner and processor of specialty lubricants attributed the improvement to decreased derivative losses, lower general and administrative expenses, and a reduction in interest expenses.

Nevertheless, third-quarter sales decreased to $492.4 million, from $724.4 million in the 2008 quarter.

"The continued economic weakness during the third quarter and decline in fuel products crack spreads weighed negatively on our results,” Calumet CEO Bill Grube said in a prepared statement. “We continue to work on controlling costs, executing our hedging strategies and completing small, short-term payback projects to improve our results.”

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