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CALGARY, A.B. – Shares in Parkland Fuel Corp. rose about seven percent after Canada’s largest independent fuel marketer reported strong fourth-quarter results driven by higher refining profit margins.

The Calgary-based company that sells fuel through brands including FasGas, Esso and Chevron is reporting net earnings of $77 million in the last three months of 2018, up from $49 million in the year-earlier period.

The earnings are well ahead of analyst expectations for $63 million, according to Thomson Reuters Eikon.

Revenue for the quarter was $3.5 billion, up from $3.4 billion in the same three months of 2017.

Parkland reports revenue for all of 2018 was $14.4 billion, up 50 percent from $9.6 billion the year before, as it enjoyed the first full year of returns from its 2017 purchases of American fuel retailer CST Brands and the B.C. refinery and fuel outlets of Chevron Canada.

Parkland says it is increasing its monthly dividend by the equivalent of two cents per share per year.

“A standout fourth quarter in the supply segment underpinned our record results, while continued synergy realization and underlying organic growth initiatives positively contributed,” said CEO Bob Espey in a statement.

On the Toronto Stock Exchange, Parkland’s shares gained $2.52 or 6.84 percent at $39.34 in late-morning trading.

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