Woodside Petroleum Half-Year Profit Jumps 4 Percent

Source: Reuters 8/16/2017, Location: Not categorized

Woodside Petroleum said its half-year profit rose 49 percent, buoyed by higher oil prices and lower costs, but missed analysts' forecasts. Australia's biggest independent oil and gas producer posted a net profit for the six months to June of $507 million, up from $340 million a year ago but below the average of four analysts' forecasts at around $534 million.

The company said lower sales volumes cut revenue by $136 million, as it had lower liquefied natural gas (LNG) production and lower Northwest Shelf pipeline gas volumes, as previously flagged. That was offset a $33 million fall in production costs, exploration expenses falling by $128 million and average realized oil prices rising to $43 a barrel, up 10 percent from a year earlier.

Woodside reiterated that the final commissioning of its main source of short-term growth, the Wheatstone LNG Train 1, is "well advanced and nearing completion". Operator Chevron Corp has said it is due to start producing soon. Woodside bought a stake in the $34 billion Wheatstone project in 2015, and it is set to contribute more than 13 million boe to Woodside's annual output at full tilt. The company announced an interim dividend of 49 cents per share, up from 34 cents a share a year ago.


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