April 27, 2022--Researched by Industrial Info Resources (Sugar Land, Texas)--The past few months have been a good time to be a refiner in the U.S. While U.S. oil production has flatlined, demand for refined products is near pre-pandemic levels, resulting in higher prices and good margins. <a href='https://www.valero.com/' target='_blank'>Valero Energy Corporation's</a> (<a href='https://www.nyse.com/quote/XNYS:VLO' target='_blank'>NYSE:VLO</a>) (San Antonio, Texas) recently reported first-quarter 2022 earnings show this, particularly in its Refining segment. In a Tuesday earnings conference call, Valero Chief Executive Officer Joe Gorder discussed the company's performance. 'Refining margins were supported by strong product demand, coupled with very low product inventories globally. Refinery capacity rationalizations that have taken place in the last couple of years continue to contribute to the supply tightness,' said Gorder.