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ExxonMobil refinery

A crane towers over the ExxonMobil refinery in Lockwoodin January 2015.

A spokesperson for ExxonMobil called a published report claiming the oil and gas corporation may be seeking out a buyer for the Billings refinery "market rumor." 

On Friday Reuters published a report, using three anonymous sources, that the corporation was seeking to sell the refinery, which produces about 60,000 barrels of crude oil per day, for roughly $500 million. 

Representatives from two large refiners have already toured the refinery, according to two sources, Reuters reported. 

"Those are just market rumors, and we don't comment on rumors or speculation," ExxonMobil spokesperson Dan Carter said Monday, calling into question the credibility of the anonymous sources. "The company always evaluates its portfolio, businesses and opportunities." 

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When asked if there was a possibility that Exxon was looking for a potential buyer for the refinery, Carter answered no. The refinery employs about 270 people, not including contractors, according to its website

According to Reuters, the oil and gas company plans to sell the Billings refinery and redirect investments to three Gulf Coast refineries in Texas and Louisiana. 

In 2016 the Billings Gazette published a story on a similar Reuters report claiming that Exxon was looking to sell the refinery, and another plant in Joliet, Illinois. According to Friday's report, that 2016 deal fell through when the buyer wanted to purchase only the Billings plant. 

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