Exxon Mobil Corp. on July 5 signaled second-quarter operating profits fell sharply on lower natural gas prices and weaker oil refining margins, according to a regulatory filing.

Operating earnings dropped to about $7.8 billion from $17.85 billion a year earlier, when surging oil and gas prices after Russia's invasion of Ukraine boosted global energy results to record levels.

U.S. natural gas futures on July 5  were trading close to lowest level in two years, at $2.657/MMBtu, amid lower consumption levels in Europe.

Exxon's second-quarter outlook also slipped from record first quarter profit of $11.4 billion, according to a Reuters compilation of estimates by business units.

Wall Street is looking for per-share profit of $2.27 for the quarter ended June 30, according to Refinitiv. The stock closed on July 5 at $106.91 a share, roughly flat year to date.

Results from pumping oil and gas—Exxon's largest and most profitable business-fell about $2.2 billion from the $6.5 billion delivered in the first quarter, the tally showed. Lower natural gas prices reduced operating profit by about $2 billion, the filing showed.

Weaker refining margins also reduced operating results at its gasoline and diesel business by another $2.1 billion, Exxon said in a preview of factors affecting second quarter earnings.

Chemicals business performed better in the quarter with operating earnings indicating quarterly profits of $800 million, twice the level from the first quarter.

Official results are due on July 28.