Positive Q3 results 2017

An improved environment favours oil majors in mid-2017.

A healthier picture has been reported by BP in Q3 of 2017, with a profit of $1.7bn compared to $144m in previous quarter.  The nine months period of this year has seen a profit of $3.3bn compared with a loss of $382m in the same period in 2016. For the nine months, replacement cost profit was $3bn, compared with a loss of $1bn a year ago. Tjhe company also delivered double-digit earnings growth from fuels marketing in the first nine months.

Nearly doubling its income attributable to shareholders,  Shell reported $4bn in Q3 2017 up from $1.3bn in the same period in 2016.  The nine month uplift is more than 200%, with a $9bn income in Q3 2017 compared to £3bn in the same period of 2016.

The figures reflect higher contributions from Downstream, Upstream and Integrated Gas. Earnings benefited mainly from stronger refining and chemicals industry conditions, increased realised oil and gas prices and higher production from new fields, offsetting the impact of field declines and divestments.

Following the healthy financial trend for oil majors, ExxonMobil has estimated third quarter 2017 earnings of $4bn compared with $2.7bn a year earlier.  Earnings for the nine months of 2017 were $11bn, up 84% from $6bn in the same period in 2016. Commodity prices improved and performance in the Upstream and Downstream strengthened. Impacts related to Hurricane Harvey reduced earnings by an estimated 4 cents per share.

Total reported adjusted net income of $2.7bn this quarter, up 29% on a year ago as the Brent price increased by 14%. The nine month period of 2017 saw net income of $7.7bn up 31% on the same period in 2016. The French oil major recently acquired Maersk Oil for $7.45bn in a share and debt transaction.

Meanwhile additives and chemical giant Fuchs also revealed positive figures, reporting sales revenue up by 9% to €1.8bn with earnings (EBIT) up 2% to €281m in Q3 2017. Stefan Fuchs, Chairman of the Executive Board of the company said, "“Fuchs... grows encouraging in all regions of the world, particularly in China and the USA."

Chevron revealed earnings of $2bn for third quarter 2017, compared with $1.3bn in Q3 2016. Included in the latest figures was a gain on an asset sale of $675m and an asset write-off of $220m. Foreign currency effects decreased earnings in Q3 2017 by $112m, compared with an increase of $72m a year earlier. Sales and other operating revenues in third quarter 2017 were $34bn, compared to $29bn in the year-ago period.

Also reporting an improved balance sheet was ConocoPhilips, with third-quarter 2017 earnings of $0.4bn compared with a 2016 loss of $1bn. Excluding special items, adjusted earnings for the Quarter were $0.2bn, compared with an adjusted loss of $0.8bn in the previous year. “We are pleased with our financial and operational performance for the quarter and the outstanding resilience of our employees during Hurricane Harvey,” said Ryan Lance, chairman and chief executive officer.

The only oil major not to show an improved balance sheet is Phillips 66 Partners’ which reported earnings of $99m for the Quarter, compared with earnings of $103m in Q2 this year. The decrease reflects hurricane impacts of $5m on volumes and costs, as well as increased scheduled maintenance and indemnified expenses. These items were partially offset by higher crude oil pipeline and terminal volumes and improved equity earnings from the Bayou Bridge Pipeline joint venture.