Losses have widened at the UK operations of American oil giant Murphy Oil.

Murphy, which owns Murco in the UK, said its refining and marketing operations suffered a loss of $24.5m (£14.98m) in the first six months of the year, against a loss of $10.6m the year before.

It also reported second-quarter losses totalling $15.8m, against a profit of $4.4m in the same quarter last year.

Murphy, which put Murco up for sale in July last year, blamed the losses on weak refining margins at its Milford Haven refinery, as well as weaker margins across its marketing network.

“Ongoing sale activities continue to progress,” it added.