Higher natural gas prices to drive Exxon third-quarter earnings

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HOUSTON (Businesshala) – Exxon Mobil Corp indicated on Thursday that higher oil and gas prices would push third-quarter earnings by $1.5 billion over the second quarter.

FILE PHOTO: A logo of Exxon Mobil Corp is seen at the Rio Oil and Gas Expo and Conference in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil September 24, 2018. Businesshala/Sergio Moraes/File photo/File photo

Natural gas prices in the United States have more than doubled this year and oil prices are up 52% ​​as energy demand recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Exxon is also cutting costs and laying off personnel after a historic loss in 2020. Lower costs, coupled with the recent rebound in oil and gas, have driven gains sharply.

The company indicated in a corporate filing that natural gas prices should give the US oil producer the biggest increase in operating profit in the quarter. Profits from Natural could increase between $500 million and $900 million this quarter compared to the previous quarter.

US natural gas prices were trading at around $6 per million British thermal units on Thursday.

Improved refining margins are expected to increase from $500 million to $700 million in the quarter. Exxon quarterly results will be posted on October 29.

Chemical margins, on the other hand, could cut between $200 million and $400 million in operating profit in the quarter, the company said in the filing.

It also said that unsettled derivatives could reduce operating profit from oil and gas production by between $100 million-500 million in this period.

Last year, the company lost $680 million in the third quarter due to lower oil prices and production volumes.

Shares of Exxon closed Thursday at $58.82, which is up 43% this year.

Reporting by Sabrina Vale in Houston and Uday Sampath in Bengaluru; Editing by Shaunak Dasgupta and Matthew Lewis

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