I haven't covered any of the ethanol producers' quarterly results as of yet, so let's get caught up really quickly. Aventine Renewable Energy
Aventine is the pure play of the three, and it has been purely punished. The Andersons and Archer, on the other hand, have other lines of business that are booming along with the record corn crop. The Andersons is a grain trader, a fertilizer distributor, and more. ADM is, of course, a diversified agribusiness giant, processing corn, soybeans, wheat, and cocoa.
The performance gap between the pure plays and the partial participants was made even more palpable on Friday, with Pacific Ethanol's
On the conference call, management did their darnedest to keep listeners focused on the scary macro environment -- geopolitical tensions, global warming, that kind of thing. It's amazing to me that companies like Pacific Ethanol and VeraSun Energy
Also irksome was management's claim that Pacific Ethanol's rapid growth in ethanol production confirms its business strategy. Yes, they're producing more ethanol at a loss than some of their rivals. Smells like victory to me!
On second thought, I smell something different entirely.