In what is fast becoming a trend in the oil industry, the world's largest publicly traded oil company reported falling profitability as sluggish production of crude and natural gas impacted its bottom line. Fourth-quarter earnings of $1.91 a share, while beating consensus by a penny, dropped 13% year-on-year, while revenue dipped 3.3% to $110.86 billion.
Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters had expected earnings of $1.90 a share on $114.51 billion in revenue.
Oil production decreased 1.8% from the fourth quarter of 2012 on an oil-equivalent basis. Excluding entitlement volumes, OPEC quota effects and divestments, production was flat.In its refining and marketing business, operating earnings halved to $916 million, a result of weaker margins. A day earlier, competitors Marathon Petroleum (MPC), Hess Corporation (HES) and Phillips 66 (PSX) posted a fall in net income of 17%, 20% and more than 30%, respectively. By early afternoon, Exxon had shed 0.63% to $94.51, and Hess was off 0.35% to $76.79. Meanwhile, Marathon added 0.86% to $87.26, and Phillips 66 edged 0.26% higher to $74.37.
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