Alon's California system likely shut until 2015 or longer

|About: Alon USA Energy, Inc. (ALJ)|By:, SA News Editor

Alon USA Energy's (ALJ -8.8%) California refining system could be shut down through early 2015 or longer, depending on when and if the company gets needed permits to build a facility to offload U.S. crude via rail, CEO Paul Eisman tells analysts.

ALJ had expected to receive permits for the offloading facility by this quarter so it could build it and begin railing in cheaper U.S. crude in 2014; it shut the 70K bbl/day system a year ago because its dependence on imported crude rendered it unprofitable.

Eisman also says ALJ is looking at options to expand its 70K bbl/day Big Spring, Tex., refinery in the Permian Basin.

ALJ shares also are lower after Q3 earnings came in below estimates.