Reliance Industries' fourth quarter earnings are expected to be steady to strong as higher petchem profitability may drive sequential operational improvement.
Petchem segment should benefit from strong cracker margins, analysts feel.
According average of estimates of analysts polled by CNBC-TV18, profit is expected to be at Rs 8,000 crore during the quarter against Rs 8,022 crore in previous quarter while operating profit may jump 8.3 percent sequentially to Rs 11,485 crore in the quarter gone by.
Gross refining margin during the quarter is expected to be at USD 11 a barrel against USD 10.80 a barrel in previous quarter.
Petchem EBIT (earnings before interest and tax) may increase to Rs 3,590 crore from Rs 3,359 crore and refining EBIT is seen rising to Rs 6,455 crore from Rs 6,127 crore on sequential basis.
Details on energy project execution and updates on Reliance Jio would be key factors to watch out for in earnings that will be announced on April 24.
In March, Reliance Jio announced that it would start charging its subscribers with effect from April 2017, which means Jio will start contributing to its revenue. Hence, analysts will closely watch company's outlook for FY18.
Meanwhile, Reliance is executing major projects in its energy and materials chain at Jamnagar covering para-xylene, cracker complex along with downstream plants and gasification. It announced the successful and flawless commissioning of the second and final phase of Para-xylene comprising of PX crystallizers trains, trans-alkylation and aromatic extraction units at Jamnagar.
"These projects will add significant value to Reliance's refining & petrochemical business and enable Jamnagar complex to achieve energy self-sufficiency. The benefits of integration at the Jamnagar complex will set a new paradigm of scale and value addition in the refining and petrochemicals industry," the company said in its filing.
Recently Reliance also announced successful completion of its ethane project including commissioning of its ethane receipt & handling facilities and ethane cracking at its Dahej manufacturing facility in Gujarat in record time of less than 3 years.Disclosure: Reliance Industries, the parent company of Reliance Jio, owns Network 18 that publishes Moneycontrol.com.