Higher oil prices boost ExxonMo­bil, Chevron sec­ond quar­ter earn­ings

Muscat Daily - - BUSINESS -

New York, US - US petroleum gi­ants ExxonMo­bil and Chevron re­ported big jumps in sec­ondquar­ter prof­its on Fri­day, the lat­est boost from a re­cov­ery in oil prices that still feels shaky to many in­dus­try of­fi­cials.

Exxon’s profit for the quar­ter end­ing June 30 nearly dou­bled to US$3.4bn, while Chevron nabbed US$1.5bn in earn­ings, up from a US$1.5bn loss - about 15 per cent above the level in the com­pa­ra­ble 2016 quar­ter.

“These solid re­sults across our busi­nesses were driven by higher com­mod­ity prices and a con­tin­ued fo­cus on op­er­a­tions and busi­ness fun­da­men­tals,” Exxon chief ex­ec­u­tive Dar­ren Woods said.

Other fac­tors in­cluded bet­ter re­fin­ing mar­gins, higher nat­u­ral gas prices and a re­strained ap­proach to cap­i­tal spend­ing.

Chevron chief ex­ec­u­tive John Wat­son said, “Sec­ond quar­ter re­sults im­proved sub­stan­tially from a year ago.”

“We’re de­liv­er­ing higher pro­duc­tion with lower cap­i­tal and op­er­at­ing ex­pen­di­tures.”

De­spite the big jump, Exxon’s prof­its missed Wall Street ex­pec­ta­tions. An­a­lysts also hit the com­pany for a one per cent drop in oil and gas pro­duc­tion com­pared with the year-ago pe­riod.

By con­trast, Chevron’s earn­ings bested an­a­lyst ex­pec­ta­tions and re­flected a ten per cent in­crease in oil and gas pro­duc­tion amid solid out­put at its Gor­gon LNG project in Aus­tralia and its shale prop­er­ties in Texas.

Exxon re­cov­ered by the close to end 1.5 per cent lower, while Chevron gained 1.9 per cent.

Oil pro­duc­ers have been cau- tious in boost­ing in­vest­ment, in part be­cause of wor­ries that oil prices could re­treat again amid surg­ing US shale pro­duc­tion.

Oil ser­vices com­pa­nies that re­ported earn­ings over the last week said US up­stream in­vest­ment re­mains solid, but in­ter­na­tional cap­i­tal spend­ing con­tin­ues to lag.

Hal­libur­ton chief ex­ec­u­tive Jef­frey Allen Miller said ag­gres­sive drilling in North Amer­ica boosted its US busi­ness, but the in­ter­na­tional mar­ket is likely to ‘move side­ways’ in part be­cause of un­cer­tainty about oil prices.

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