- Oil firm breaks Wall Street forecast to make $19.7 billion profit
- Exxon’s fossil-fuel stakes eclipse rivals Shell, TotalEnergies
- Company forecasts flat oil production this year on Russia’s losses
HOUSTON, Oct 28 (Reuters) – Exxon Mobil Corp (XOM.N) dashed expectations on Friday as rising energy prices fueled a record-breaking quarterly profit that nearly matched that of tech giant Apple.
Its $19.66 billion third-quarter net profit recently exceeded Wall Street forecasts as natural gas skyrocketed and higher oil prices dented Apple’s (AAPL.O) $20.7 billion net for the same period. Have put your earnings within profit.
As recently as 2013, Exxon was ranked as the largest publicly traded US company by market value – a position now held by Apple. Shares of Exxon rose 3% to $110.70, a record high that gave it a market value of $461 billion.
The oil company’s profits have soared this year as rising demand and an under-supply energy market clashed with Western sanctions over Ukraine’s invasion of Russia. US gas and oil exports to Europe have boomed and promise to set an all-time profit record for the industry.
The top US oil producer reported a per-share gain of $4.68, exceeding Wall Street’s $3.89 consensus outlook, on a spurt in natural gas earnings, higher oil prices and strong fuel sales.
Chief executive Darren Woods told investors, “While others faced uncertainty and a historic downturn, retreats and layoffs, this company moved on, continued to invest.” He said its quarterly gains “reflect that deep commitment” as well as higher prices.
Exxon led record gains among oil majors in the second quarter and leapfrogged Shell plc (SHEL.L) and TotalEnergies SE (TTEF.PA) with nearly twice as big earnings from continued bets on fossil fuels as competitors. has shifted investment to renewable energy.
Exxon banked $43 billion in the first nine months of this year, up 19% from the same period in 2008, when oil prices traded at a record high of $140 a barrel.
Income from oil and gas pumping tripled last quarter, while profits from selling motor fuels rose tenfold compared to a year-ago level. Sales of natural gas in Europe and rising demand for diesel fuel led the company to better-than-expected results.
“The refining business was a star performer both in the US and internationally,” said Peter McNally, an analyst at Third Bridge.
Those rising fuel profits have renewed calls by US President Joe Biden for companies to invest in production rather than buy back their own shares from this year’s energy price run-up.
Chief financial officer Katherine Mikels told Reuters that Exxon will maintain its $30 billion share buyback through 2023 while increasing the dividend. On Friday, it announced a fourth-quarter dividend per share of 91 cents, up 3 cents, and will pay shareholders $15 billion this year.
Exxon said its US oil and gas production from the Permian Basin was close to 560,000 barrels of oil and gas per day (BoEPD), a record high. CEO Woods said production for the year would increase by about 20% in 2021.
“We are optimizing and adjusting our growth plans,” he told analysts, with the full-year production increase of 25% Exxon forecast in February.
Results were also helped by a nearly 100,000-boePD increase compared to the previous quarter in Guyana, where Exxon leads a consortium responsible for all production in the South American nation.
But its withdrawal from Russia lowered its overall production forecast for the year by about 100,000 barrels per day. Exxon said its Russian assets had been confiscated.
“We’re going to end up with about 3.7 million barrels per day for the full year,” Mikels said, down from the 3.8 million bpd target set in February.
Reporting by Sabrina Valle; Editing by Ana Nicolasi da Costa, Jonathan Otis and Marguerita Choy
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