Chevron profit drops on lower oil output, maintenance

SAN RAMON, Calif., Fri Nov 2, 2012 – Chevron Corp. posted a 33 percent drop in quarterly earnings as maintenance exacerbated a steady decline in output from oil and natural gas wells over the past year and as a huge fire at one of the company’s California plants hit the refining business.

The second-largest U.S. oil company said on Friday that third-quarter net income had fallen to $5.25 billion, or $2.69 per share, from $7.83 billion, or $3.92 per share, a year earlier.

Increasing output has been a struggle for many big oil companies, including Exxon Mobil Corp and Royal Dutch Shell Plc. With oil and gas assets tightly controlled by the countries where they are located, the majors are left to drill in pricier regions on land and offshore.

Chevron’s third-quarter oil and gas production fell to 2.52 million barrels of oil equivalent per day from 2.60 million bpd a year earlier. On quarter-to-quarter basis, the production number fell for the third period in a row.

Earnings dropped 17 percent to $5.1 billion in the oil and gas production business and plunged 65 percent to $689 million in the refining, or downstream, operation.

U.S. EPA probes possible crimes at Chevron’s Calif. refinery: report

HOUSTON, Mon Sep 24, 2012 – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is investigating possible criminal violations by Chevron Corp. at its San Francisco Bay-area refinery in Richmond, Calif., according to a report by the San Francisco Chronicle.

The investigation is unrelated to state and federal probes of an Aug. 6 explosion and fire that shut the central crude oil refining unit at the 245,000 barrel-per-day Richmond refinery, according to the Chronicle report.

Chevron told the newspaper that it was cooperating with the investigation, which began early this year, prior to the fire.

California pollution investigators have also been investigating the use of the 3-inch (7.6-centimeter) pipe, which allowed emissions from a hydrocracking complex to bypass the refinery’s pollution control equipment on the way to the refinery’s safety flare system, at the discretion of the complex’s operator.

Chevron told the Chronicle the use of the pipe was inadvertent.

A Chevron representative was not immediately available on Sunday to discuss operations at the Richmond refinery.

Chevron profits slip with oil price dip

RAMON, Calif., Fri Jul 27, 2012 – Chevron Corp., the second-largest U.S. oil company, reported a lower quarterly profit on Friday as oil prices weakened from a year earlier, though fatter refining margins cushioned the blow.
Second-quarter net income fell to $7.2 billion, or $3.66 per share, from $7.7 billion, or $3.85 per share, in the year-ago quarter.
The company’s upstream business – oil and gas production – posted an 18 percent profit drop to $5.6 billion, while its downstream refining business saw profit jump 80 percent to $1.88 billion.
Chevron said earlier this month that industry benchmark margins on the Gulf Coast rose more than $4 per barrel to $24.89, while West Coast margins improved to $21.32 per barrel, their highest three-month average in four years.
Chevron’s largest refinery is in Mississippi, with 330,000 barrels per day of capacity, while its two California plants can together refine 518,000 bpd.
Profits at larger rival Exxon Mobil Corp. fell short of expectations on Thursday as oil and gas output sagged and its chemical unit faced weak margins.
Shares in Chevron rose less than 1 percent in premarket trading.

Chevron sees a 20 percent increase in production by 2017

SAN RAMON, Calif., Tue Mar 13, 2012 – Chevron Corp. plans to increase overall production by a fifth by 2017, helped by big Australian projects that start delivering gas to energy-hungry Asian markets in two years, while the company explores for shale gas in China and Poland.

Closer to home, in the Marcellus shale, the second-largest U.S. oil company said reservoir outcomes were exceeding expectations, although it was investing there at a “measured pace” in light of depressed North American natural gas prices.

George Kirkland, executive vice president for upstream and gas, said the company saw plenty of demand for Australian liquefied natural gas given it would be sold in Asia, which does not have the same glut as North America.

“LNG is a replacement energy for coal or oil or nuclear and it really doesn’t have any direct gas-on-gas competition, apart from other LNG,” Kirkland said at a meeting with analysts in New York. “All these markets are different.”

A new Angolan LNG project with capacity for 175,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (bpd) would start shipping next quarter and, while contracts with Angola’s government were not finalized, Chevron expected the gas to go to Europe and Asia.

New sources of onshore gas, opened up through new drilling techniques and hydraulic fracturing, have been found in other countries. In Poland, Chevron started up a second shale gas well this quarter and it also started an initial well in China, where it is exploring 940,000 acres along with Sinopec.

Larger rival Exxon Mobil Corp. had cast some doubt on Polish shale gas prospects after its first two wells there did not find commercial quantities.

Chevron profit falls as refineries, output suffer

SAN RAMON, Calif. – Chevron Corp. reported lower quarterly earnings on Friday, missing Wall Street forecasts, as rising spending on oil and gas projects and losses at its U.S. refinery business offset gains from higher crude oil prices.Oil and gas output at the No. 2 U.S. oil company also declined to 2.64 million barrels per day from 2.79 million BPD a year-ago, although benchmark oil prices rose about 25 percent during the quarter.

Chevron had said earlier this month its refinery margins were suffering and would be near breakeven for the quarter, but the U.S. losses pulled the entire segment into the red, and the company’s profits from oil and gas sales also appeared weaker than expected.

Its shares fell 2.5 percent in early trading.

“It was a miss on some non-controllable factors,” said Pavel Molchanov, analyst with Raymond James in Houston, citing the timings of sales and global pricing differences as the likely reason oil and gas profits fell about $500 million below his forecast.

Still, Chevron added 1.67 billion barrels of oil equivalent to its reserves last year, 171 percent of its 2011 output, a very strong performance, Molchanov said.

Chevron is embroiled in two major legal battles in South America, where a Brazilian prosecutor plans to file criminal charges against it and some of its local managers.

The company is facing an $11 billion lawsuit there related to an offshore oil spill in November, and it also remains locked in a legal war against plaintiffs in Ecuador, who won an $18 billion judgment against it in a court there.

Chevron profit more than doubles, tops Wall Street forecast

SAN RAMON, Calif. ― Chevron Corp. said its quarterly earnings more than doubled, beating Wall Street forecasts, as the second-largest U.S. oil company benefited from high oil prices and strong refinery margins.

Chevron’s profit rose to $7.8 billion, or $3.92 per share, from $3.8 billion, or $1.87 per share, a year earlier.

Analysts had expected $3.48 a share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Sales rose 26 percent to $61.26 billion.

Chevron reported 2.6 million barrels of oil equivalent per day (bpd) of output, down from 2.74 million a year-ago.

Benchmark Brent crude averaged $112 per barrel in the quarter, down from $117 in the second quarter but up from $77 a year before.

On Thursday, Exxon Mobil Corp and Royal Dutch Shell Plc. reported sharp increases in quarterly profits that came in ahead of analysts’ forecasts.

Chevron recorded a one-time gain of about $500 million from the sale of its Pembroke refinery to Valero Energy Corp.

In July, Chevron said a slower Gulf of Mexico project ramp-up and a Thai pipeline problem would trim its 2011 production by about 30,000 bpd.

Chevron shares were down slightly in premarket trading.