Profits rise for oil majors amid higher oil prices and rising production

BP, Total and ConocoPhillips are among the oil and gas companies that felt a boost in profits amid higher oil prices.

Total, Chevron, ExxonMobil, Royal Dutch Shell, BP, British Petroleum, ConocoPhillips

As oil majors start posting their third quarter results, rising oil prices and higher production are being clearly reflected in their profits.

BP's Q3 profits struck a five-year high at $3.8bn net income, up from $1.86bn last year for the same period. Reuters says a company-provided survey of analysts showed forecasts of $2.85bn. Rising oil prices helped the company start major projects and boost production. With its recent acquisition of BHP Billiton's shale business for $10.5bn, which Reuters reports will be totally funded in cash, BP is set to continue growing production. 

Meanwhile, Total surpassed analyst expectations to hit its highest quarterly net income in six years, with production at 2.8 million barrels of oil equivalent per day (mboed).

“Total’s third quarter adjusted net income increased by 48 percent from last year to $4 billion, while oil prices increased 44 percent to $75 per barrel supported by supply tensions and the geopolitical context,” Total CEO Patrick Pouyanne said in a statement.

ConocoPhillips posted third quarter profits of $1.9bn, up from $0.4bn in Q3 2017. "Our strategy is designed to generate superior returns through cycles by maintaining discipline, focusing on free cash flow and allocating this cash according to clear, shareholder-friendly priorities," said Ryan Lance, chairman and chief executive officer. "This is what the market can expect from us again in 2019.”

The company expects production in its fourth quarter to be between 1.27mboed and 1.31mboed, compared to its third quarter production of 1.22mboed. 

Royal Dutch Shell will post third quarter results on November 1, and ExxonMobil and Chevron on November 2. 

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