A rebound in crude prices helped the world’s energy supermajors generate higher profits in the second quarter but ultimately it was how much oil and gas they produced that differentiated their fortunes.

For ExxonMobil, which was widely seen as having the worst performance of all the majors, higher prices were offset by a 7% drop in combined oil and gas production in the quarter from the same period last year.

Paul Sankey, an analyst from Mizuho in New York, described Exxon’s results as “shocking” and said the production number underlined the need for the world’s biggest energy producer to fast-track projects.

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