UPDATE 1-Western Refining's profit misses estimates as margins fall
* Second-quarter earnings $1.29/share vs est. $1.31
* Sales rise 79 pct to $4.35 bln
* Refinery gross margin slips to $23.42/barrel from $25.69 (Adds details, shares)
Aug 5 (Reuters) - Western Refining Inc reported a lower-than-expected quarterly profit as the company's refining margins fell due to higher crude costs.
U.S. refiners such as Western Refining had typically enjoyed strong margins as they refined cheap shale crude into products such as gasoline and diesel, which are sold at prices linked to the more expensive Brent crude.
But the recent runup in U.S. crude oil prices weighed on Western Refining's profit in the second quarter ended June 30.
Although the company's revenue shot up 79 percent, a nearly 88 percent jump in the cost of products sold hurt margins.
Refinery gross margins slipped to $23.42 per barrel in the second quarter from $25.69, a year earlier.
Chief Executive Jeff Stevens, however, said the third quarter was off to a "strong start." Continuación...