The company disclosed a $2 billion profit gain from selling natural gas. The disclosure indicated the largest U.S. oil maker will post quarterly profits close to the second quarter’s record $17.9 billion profit. However, the energy giant projected it will not match those profits as oil prices have retreated along with refining and chemical segment profits.
Exxon reported its operating profit could come in at around $11 billion in the third quarter, up from $6.7 billion a year earlier, but a drop from the previous quarter. Exxon didn’t include the impact of foreign exchange on its earnings. Exxon could earn about $4 per share compared to the second quarter’s $4.21 per share in profits. Analysts had expected profits of $3.44 per share.
Exxon’s natural gas segment was bolstered by rising prices during the third quarter. In August, U.S. natural gas futures hit a 14-year high, topping $10 per BTU. Exxon expects natural gas price strength to lead to a gain of $1.8 billion to $2.2 billion in the third quarter.
Exxon is expected to announce third quarter earnings on October 28. Its shares are up over 56% so far this year.