ExxonMobil Corporation at the weekend announced estimated first quarter 2017 earnings of $4 billion, compared with $1.8 billion a year earlier, resulting from improvements in commodity prices, cost management and refining operations.
The company had earned $7.8 billion in the whole of 2016, representing a 51 per cent decline from $16.2 billion in 2015.
However, for first quarter of 2017, capital and exploration expenditures were $4.2 billion, down 19 per cent from the first quarter of 2016.
Oil-equivalent production was 4.2 million oil-equivalent barrels per day, also down four per cent from the prior year.
Excluding entitlement effects and divestments, oil-equivalent production was also down one per cent from the prior year.
The new Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the company, Darren W. Woods said the results reflected an increase in commodity prices and also highlighted the companyâ€™s continued focus on controlling costs and operating efficiently.
â€œWe continue to make strategic acquisitions, advance key initiatives and fund long-term growth projects across the value chain,â€ he said.
According to the results, upstream volumes were 4.2 million oil-equivalent barrels per day, a decline of four per cent compared with the prior year, primarily due to the impact of lower entitlements due to increasing prices, and higher maintenance.
The results showed that upstream earnings of $2.3 billion improved on higher liquids and gas realizations while downstream earnings of $1.1 billion benefited from increased refinery throughput.
Capital and exploration expenditures totaled $4.2 billion as the company advanced investments across its integrated businesses.
During the period, the company distributed $3.1 billion as dividends to shareholders, while earnings of $4 billion increased 122 per cent from the first quarter of 2016.
Also cash flow from operations and asset sales was $8.9 billion, including proceeds associated with asset sales of $687 million
Dividends per share of $0.75 increased 2.7 percent compared with the first quarter of 2016.
During the quarter, ExxonMobil completed the acquisitions of InterOil Corporation and companies with oil and gas properties primarily in the Permian Basin.
ExxonMobil and Eni S.p.A. signed a sale and purchase agreement to enable ExxonMobil to acquire a 25 percent indirect interest in the natural gas-rich Area 4 block, offshore Mozambique, for approximately $2.8 billion. The acquisition will be completed following satisfaction of a number of conditions precedent, including clearance from regulatory authorities
The company secured additional high-potential exploration acreage in Papua New Guinea, Cyprus and the US Gulf of Mexico.
ExxonMobil announced positive results from the Snoek well offshore Guyana, confirming a new discovery on the Stabroek Block.
The company announced plans to expand the production of high-quality lubricant basestocks at the Singapore refinery.
The investment will increase the supply of lubricant basestocks designed to maximize the performance of all major automotive engine oil grades and to enhance the performance of finished lubricants used in multiple industries.
ExxonMobil launched Mobil 1 Annual Protection, which offers consumers the convenience of driving one full year or up to 20,000 miles between oil changes.
Mobil 1 Annual Protection has been specifically formulated to offer maximum wear protection, as well as increase resistance to oil breakdown and protect engine parts from harmful sludge and deposits, resulting in extended engine life.
Synthetic Genomics, Inc. and ExxonMobil announced they have extended their agreement to conduct joint research into advanced algae biofuels after making significant progress in understanding algae genetics.