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Exxon Earnings Exceed Pre-Pandemic Level

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Exxon Mobil Corp’s fourth quarter profit should top Wall Street’s consensus and surpass its pre-pandemic levels, lifted by better-than-expected earnings from oil and gas, analysts said.

Credit Suisse, Scotiabank and JPMorgan have raised their fourth quarter earnings estimates following Exxon’s flagging of sharply higher oil and gas operating profit last week. Official results are due on February 1.

The higher earnings outlooks lifted Exxon shares 3.8 percent on Monday to $63.51 on top of Friday’s less than 1 percent gain. The stock rose 48 percent last year but remains below where it traded two years ago.

In 2020, the largest US oil producer suffered a historic $22.4 billion loss from falling oil prices and lower refining margins. Cost cuts and energy price hikes allowed it to pay down debt and plot a share buyback program this year.

An Exxon security filing signaled quarterly results “above the midpoint” of prior guidance and “well above pre-pandemic levels,” Credit Suisse analyst Manav Gupta wrote in a note.

The company could earn $8.2 billion, or $1.93 per share, according to the mid-point average estimate of the three banks that have updated their estimates, excluding one-time items. That is above analysts’ adjusted profit of $1.79 per share as tallied by Refinitiv IBES.

Exxon also signaled mark-to-market gains of up to $1.1 billion for oil and gas and refined products.

Proceeds from asset sales including its UK North Sea assets could deliver up to $500 million, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing.

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