U.S. oil and gas producer EOG Resources Inc. beat analysts’ estimate for first-quarter profit and declared a special dividend of $1 per share on May 6, as COVID-19 vaccine rollouts and increased travel demand lift crude prices.
WTI futures in the U.S. gained 23% in the first quarter after the pandemic hammered fuel demand in 2020, sparking optimism among shale producers.
EOG’s average crude oil prices jumped nearly 39% to $58.02/bbl in the quarter, from the last three months of 2020.
However, total production fell to 778,900 boe/d from the prior quarter's 801,500 boe/d, hit by the Winter Storm Uri that swept across U.S. central and southern states in mid-February.
A clutch of U.S. oil and gas producers have recently raised their dividends. Chevron Corp., the No.2 U.S. oil producer, has increased its quarterly payout by 5 cents to $1.34 per share, while Marathon Oil Corp. raised it to 4 cents per share from 3 cents. Continental Resources Inc. reinstated its dividend.
EOG’s March-quarter adjusted net income rose to $946 million, or $1.62 per share, from $411 million, or 71 cents per share, in the fourth.
Analysts had expected a profit of $1.48 per share, according to Refinitiv IBES.
On May 5, rivals Marathon Oil and APA Corp., an affiliate of Apache Corp., also beat first-quarter profit estimates.
Editor’s note: This story was updated at 4:08 a.m. CT May 7.
U.S. oil rigs rose eight to 373 this week, while gas rigs rose one to 97, according to Baker Hughes.
No decision had been taken yet on the exact volume to bring back to the market, two OPEC+ sources said June 22.
Staatsolie is negotiating production-sharing contracts for Chevron for Block 5 and with the Total-Qatar Petroleum consortium for Blocks 6 and 8, the state oil company says.