ExxonMobil 3Q earnings up nearly 50% despite Harvey impacts

ExxonMobil Corp. posted third-quarter earnings of $4 billion, up from $2.7 billion in third-quarter 2016 as commodity prices improved and upstream and downstream performance strengthened. The results came despite some downstream expenses related to Hurricane Harvey, which impacted its 584,000-b/d Baytown and 365,000-b/d Beaumont refineries in Texas.

ExxonMobil Corp. posted third-quarter earnings of $4 billion, up from $2.7 billion in third-quarter 2016 as commodity prices improved and upstream and downstream performance strengthened. The results came despite some downstream expenses related to Hurricane Harvey, which impacted its 584,000-b/d Baytown and 365,000-b/d Beaumont refineries in Texas.

The major’s downstream earnings totaled $1.5 billion, up $303 million year-over-year. Higher refining margins increased earnings by $1 billion.

Volume and mix effects decreased downstream earnings by $160 million, while all other items decreased earnings by $550 million, reflecting the absence of favorable asset management gains of $380 million in the prior year from the sale of Canadian retail assets and higher expenses related to Hurricane Harvey.

In its US downstream segment, earnings were $391 million, up $166 million from third-quarter 2016.

The firm’s chemical earnings of $1.1 billion were $79 million lower than third-quarter 2016. Weaker margins decreased earnings by $200 million, while volume and mix effects increased earnings by $120 million.

In its US chemical segment, earnings of $403 million were $31 million lower a year earlier.

ExxonMobil’s upstream earnings totaled $1.6 billion, up $947 million from third-quarter 2016. Higher liquids and gas realizations increased earnings by $860 million.

Liquids production in the quarter totaled 2.3 million boe/d, up 69,000 boe/d as lower downtime and higher project volumes were partly offset by field decline. Natural gas production was 9.6 bcfd, down 16 MMcfd from 2016 as field decline and lower demand were partly offset by project ramp-up—primarily in Australia—and work programs.

In its US upstream segment, the firm took a third-quarter loss of $238 million compared with to a loss of $477 million a year earlier.

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