PKN Orlen, Poland's largest oil refiner and fuel retailer, said that first quarter profit rose by forty seven percent, as the company raised prices for its finished products, such as gasoline and diesel. Net income at the group in the first three months rose to 66 million zloty ($26 million), or 16 grosze a share, from 45 million zloty, or 11 grosze, a year earlier, according to a statement filed to the Warsaw Stock Exchange. The company was able to pass on to customers the higher prices it paid for crude oil, its main raw material. It also was able to show a higher profit amid a thirty six percent increase in Brent crude in the first quarter because of an accounting method, analysts said. “They are benefiting from rising oil prices and an inventory method that lowers costs,” said Michal Mierzwa, an analyst at Erste Bank in Warsaw. “Last year was very tough,” making this year's earnings look better.
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