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Exxon Net is $9.92 Billion

Widening refinery spreads offset slightly lower production.
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broke off another in a series of staggeringly profitable quarters Thursday, juiced up by the run in crude and gasoline prices.

The $354 billion market cap supermajor earned $9.92 billion, or $1.58 a share, in the quarter, up 75% from $5.68 billion, or 88 cents a share, last year. The latest quarter included a restructuring charge before which Exxon earned $1.32 a share, missing estimates by 6 cents.

Revenue rose 32% from a year ago to $100.72 billion.

Exxon earned $7.6 billion on revenue of $88.5 billion in the second quarter and $7.86 billion on revenue of $82.1 billion in the first quarter. At $56.63, the stock is up 12% this year and 45% from the start of 2004, and it costs 10 times the 2006 Thomson First Call earnings consensus of $5.63 a share.

The third-quarter results reflect higher earnings in Exxon's exploration-and-production units and refining and retail operations, slightly offset by costs related to hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Exxon's upstream E&P unit earned $5.73 billion before gains in the quarter, up $1.8 billion from a year ago, reflecting higher prices for crude and natural gas.

Downstream refining and marketing earnings were $2.13 billion in the quarter, up $727 million, reflecting higher profit margins on petroleum.

While revenue and profit rose, production fell in the quarter. On an oil-equivalent basis, Exxon produced 4% less crude and natural gas in the third quarter of 2005, as output from newer wells was more than offset by declines in mature fields and the impact of the hurricanes.