Exxon 4Q Results Ahead of Expectations

Exxon Mobil Corp (NYSE:XOM) reported fourth quarter results that were marginally ahead of Street expectations on both earnings and revenue.

Though production of both natural gas and crude oil declined during the period, the company benefited from rising crude oil prices. Sales of land also helped bolster results. However, the engine lubricants business, a downstream unit, was a drag as its profits declined 13 percent. Plastics and allied products, manufactured at the chemicals unit, also put in a poor show with profits falling 49 percent.

Exxon’s net income was $9.4 billion ($1.97 a share) as compared to $9.25 billion ($1.85 a share) in the year ago quarter. This was just slightly better than analysts’ expectation of $1.96 a share. Total revenue was up 16 percent at $121.61 billion against the expectation of $119.7 billion. Capital expenditure on projects and exploration during the quarter was $10 billion, about the same as a year ago.

The beat-by-a-whisker did not enthuse the Street and the company’s shares were down more than a percent in pre-market trading.