National Fuel Gas ( NFG - Get Report) said it expects to see third-quarter and 2003 earnings shortfalls as lower production volumes will cause the company to miss consensus estimates.

The energy company forecast third-quarter EPS in the range of 28 cents to 32 cents, below the Thomson Financial/First Call consensus estimate of 34 cents.

While National's 2002 full-year outlook remained consistent with analyst estimates, the company said it expects to see EPS of $1.60 to $1.70 in 2003, falling short of First Call estimates of $1.77 a share.

On Thursday, the company reported a drop in second-quarter net earnings, saying it earned $61.9 million, or 77 cents a share, compared with $75.3 million, or 94 cents a share, in the year-ago quarter. Excluding one-time charges and gains, the company earned 75 cents a share, falling short of the consensus estimate of 79 cents.

National said its shortfalls assume lower production by its Seneca Resources subsidiary and an expected output decline in the Gulf Coast region.

Shares of National Fuel closed Friday at $23.98.