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Occidental Petroleum Corp. on Nov. 8 posted a four-fold increase in third-quarter profit from a year earlier, while receding from the previous quarter as energy prices eased from peaks.
Oil and gas producers such as Houston-based Occidental are benefiting this year from crude prices that have cooled down in recent months but are still hovering at their highest levels in years as sanctions on Russia and output cuts by OPEC+ fuel supply concerns.
Net income attributable to common stockholders was $2.55 billion, or $2.52 a share, in the third quarter. That is a four-fold increase from the $628 million, or 65 cents per share, from a year earlier, but a decrease from the $3.6 billion posted in the second quarter.
Lower crude oil and natural gas liquids prices in the quarter contributed to the reduction, which was partially offset by higher sales volumes across all commodities and higher gas prices, the company said.
Occidental’s total average global production was 1.18 million boe/d in the third quarter, 10,000 boe/d above the top end of its guidance. Production in the U.S. Permian Basin of 523,000 boe/d came at the lower end of Occidental’s guidance.
The oil and gas producer paid $1.3 billion in debt and reduced debt to less than $19 billion in the quarter, meeting its short-term target that would enable a potential upgrade to investment grade by rating agencies.
Last quarter, Occidental said it was accelerating a three-year target to bring debt down to $15 billion.
During the quarter, Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway grew its stake in Occidental to about 20.9%, allowing the conglomerate to report its proportionate share of Occidental’s earnings with its own operating results, through the so-called equity method of accounting.
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