NEW YORK (AP) – Exxon Mobil Corp. said Thursday that income jumped 55 percent in the third quarter on higher oil prices and increased production.
The world’s largest publicly traded oil company reported earnings of $7.35 billion, or $1.44 per share, for the third quarter. That compares with $4.73 billion, or 98 cents per share, in the year-ago period. Revenue increased 15.8 percent to $95.3 billion.
Petroleum companies have seen profits jump as oil prices rebounded from 2009. The ability to sell crude barrels for more money has offset unexpected drilling expenses and a drop in Gulf of Mexico production that some companies are starting to see following BP’s giant oil spill earlier this year.
The U.S. shut down deepwater exploration for several months after the April explosion on the Deepwater Horizon rig, and regulators set tough new rules that nearly halted drilling activity in the Gulf. In July, Exxon took the lead in organizing a $1 billion containment network that will eventually be used to respond to future spills in the Gulf.
Exxon, based in Irving, Texas, posted higher profits for most of its businesses; including oil production and exploration, refining and U.S. chemicals. It also cranked up oil production year-over-year, and its refineries made more fuel. The acquisition of XTO Energy helped it increase natural-gas production by 50 percent year-over-year.
Exxon’s profit was less than the $7.56 billion it earned in the previous quarter as it paid higher corporate and financing costs and its chemicals business posted lower profits. Two years ago, Exxon set the all-time record for profits by a U.S. corporation with $14.8 billion in the third quarter of 2008.
Also on Thursday, Royal Dutch Shell PLC said quarterly profits climbed by 6.5 percent to $3.46 billion with higher oil prices offsetting charges in its refining business. On Wednesday, ConocoPhillips said its income more than doubled for the third straight quarter, as it earned $3.06 billion for the July-September period. Its results were propped up by asset sales as well as higher prices for crude.
Exxon shares rose 46 cents to $66.13 in pre-market trading.
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