Suncor Energy Inc. says it earned $2.74 billion in the fourth quarter of 2022, a 76 per cent increase from the $1.55 billion it earned in the same three months of 2021.

The Calgary-based company says its increased profit was due to the higher price of crude and refined product realizations as well as higher upstream production, partially offset by increased operating expenses.

On an adjusted basis, Suncor says it earned $2.43 billion, or $1.81 per common share, compared to $1.30 billion or 89 cents per common share in the prior year's quarter.

The energy giant says its total upstream production increased to 763,100 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boe/d) in the fourth quarter of 2022, compared to 743,300 boe/d in the prior year quarter, primarily driven by increased production from the company's oilsands assets.

Suncor's refinery crude throughput was 440,000 barrels per day and its refinery utilization was 94 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2022, compared to 447,000 bbls/d and 96 per cent in the prior-year quarter. 

It attributes the decrease in part to unexpected maintenance that occurred in the quarter, including that required as a result of bad weather at the company's Commerce City refinery.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 14, 2023.