Oil stocks have had a great run in 2022. Crude prices surged following Russia's invasion of Ukraine, enabling oil companies to feast on higher prices. While oil has cooled off considerably from its peak on concerns that demand could decline in 2023 if the global economy slows, most economists expect crude prices to remain elevated. Meanwhile, demand should stay healthy for years, even as the global economy switches fuel sources.

That all bodes well for oil stocks in the coming years. Three great ones to buy for this year and beyond are Chevron (CVX -0.01%)Enbridge (ENB -0.24%), and Phillips 66 (PSX 0.08%). Here's why they stand out as some of the top options in the oil patch.

Well positioned for the future

Chevron is having a record year. The oil giant set all-time quarterly highs for profit and operating cash flow this year. That gave the company the funds to deliver on its four financial priorities. 

It increased its dividend by another 6%, marking its 35th year of consecutive dividend increases, pushing the yield up to 3.3%. Chevron also grew its traditional and new energy businesses, strengthened its balance sheet, and bought back stock at the high end of its target range. 

That puts it in a strong position for the future. Chevron ended the third quarter with a leverage ratio under 5%, well below its 20% to 25% target range. That gives it the flexibility to continue investing and returning cash to shareholders if oil prices slump. Plus, the company continues to grow its new energy businesses. It's now the second largest biorenewable diesel producer in the country following its acquisition of Renewable Energy Group. Chevron's investments in lower-carbon fuels put it in an excellent position to continue growing shareholder value in the future. 

Ample fuel to continue expanding

Enbridge is also having a strong year. The Canadian energy infrastructure giant expects its distributable cash flow will grow by about 8% per share this year. It's benefiting from new investments placed into service over the past year and higher volumes.

The company expects its cash flow will continue growing next year. That gave the oil pipeline company the confidence to increase its dividend. It has boosted its big-time payout -- Enbridge yields more than 6% -- for 28 straight years. 

Enbridge should be able to continue growing its cash flow and dividend for years to come. The company has a multibillion-dollar backlog of commercially secured expansion projects, including new natural gas pipelines, gas utility expansions, and offshore wind farms in Europe. These projects provide increasingly visible growth for the next several years. They should give Enbridge the fuel to continue growing its high-yielding dividend.

Balancing growth with shareholder returns

Phillips 66 is also having a great 2022. The refining and logistics giant capitalized on favorable market conditions to produce strong earnings and cash flow. It also sharpened its strategic focus by completing the acquisition of its namesake master limited partnership (MLP), Phillips 66 Partners, and merging two joint ventures with Enbridge. That latter deal boosted its stake in DCP Midstream Partners (DCP) to enhance its natural gas liquids (NGL) strategy in exchange for reducing its interest in an oil pipeline. Phillips 66 followed that up by offering to acquire the rest of that MLP it doesn't already own. 

The diversified energy giant also approved several expansion projects to fuel future growth. It plans to spend $850 million to convert its San Francisco refinery to a renewable fuels facility that should start up in 2024. Meanwhile, its chemicals joint venture with Chevron is partnering with QatarEnergy to build an $8.5 billion plant in Texas that should start up in 2026. 

Even with this investment spending, Phillips 66 plans to return more money to shareholders in the coming years. It aims to send them $10 billion to $12 billion by the end of 2024 through share repurchases and dividends. The company increased its share repurchase authorization by $5 billion and will continue growing its dividend, which currently yields 3.8%. Phillips 66's combination of growth and returns should expand shareholder value in the coming years.

Well-oiled machines

Chevron, Enbridge, and Phillips 66 are well positioned for 2022 and beyond. These oil companies are cashing in on the current strong oil market. That's giving them the money to expand their fossil fuels and lower-carbon energy businesses to drive future growth. Add in their attractive and growing dividends, and they're great oil stocks to buy and hold long-term.