Phillips Petroleum, Coastal Report Higher-Than-Expected Earnings

The results extend a streak of vibrant results in the energy industry from higher oil and natural gas prices.
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Phillips Petroleum

(P)

and

Coastal

(CGP)

, reported higher-than-expected quarterly earnings Thursday, extending a streak of vibrant results in the energy industry from higher oil and natural gas prices.

Their announcements followed strong earnings reports earlier in the week from:

Chevron

(CHV)

,

ExxonMobil

(XOM) - Get Report

,

Texaco

(TX) - Get Report

,

Conoco

(COC.B)

and

Tosco

(TOS)

.

Phillips reported net income, excluding special items, or $271 million, or $1.07 per share in the January-March quarter, compared with $4 million, or 2 cents a share, a year earlier. Revenue rose to $4.8 billion from $2.5 billion. Wall Street had expected earnings of $1.03 a share, according to a poll conducted by

First Call/Thomson Financial

.

Including special items, first quarter net income was $250 million, or 99 cents a share, compared with $70 million, or 28 cents a share a year ago.

The company, based in Bartlesville, Okla., said it expects its debt-to-capital ratio to peak in the second quarter at about 60% following completion of the acquisition of

Atlantic Richfield's

(ARC) - Get Report

holdings in Alaska. In the second half of the year, the ratio, at the high-end of analysts' expectations, is likely to improve, the company said.

The $7 billion deal, which was arranged to help address antitrust concerns over

BP Amoco's

(BPA)

takeover of Atlantic Richfield, was announced in March.

Phillips was trading up 1/8, or 0.25%, to 49 1/4 at midday trading. (Phillips closed down 3/16, or 0.4%, at 48 15/16.)

Coastal, a Houston-based holding company that concentrates in natural gas and refining said first-quarter earnings rose 29% to $173.6 million, or 80 cents a diluted share, compared with $134.5 million, or 62 cents a share a year ago.

A First Call/Thomson Financial survey indicated that analysts were expecting earnings of 77 cents a share.

Revenue rose 71% to $2.93 billion.

Coastal's share price was up 15/16, or 2%, to 51 9/16 at midday trading. (Coastal closed up 3/16, or 0.4%, at 50 13/16.)