Statoil’s profits better than expected

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Norway’s largest company, Statoil, hasn’t been as badly affected by lower oil prices as some analysts had expected. The oil and gas company reported lower second-quarter profits than it did earlier this year, but they were higher than last year and production rose, as did Statoil’s share price.

Statoil is still doing well, despite lower oil prices. PHOTO: Statoil/Harald Pettersen

Adjusted operating results landed at NOK 45.8 billion, down from record results in first quarter but up from the NOK 43.7 billion earned in the same quarter last year. Investors seemed impressed by the company’s performance, sending Statoil’s share price up 2.1 percent to NOK 144, apparently based largely on Statoil’s higher production levels.

Statoil CEO Helge Lund claimed that the company “continues to deliver good financial results. We increased oil and gas production by 17 percent compared to the second quarter last year.” Oil prices are lower than they were in the first quarter, but remain historically high, and Lund said Statoil was “prepared” for prices that can be lower.

Statoil’s still-strong profits are good news for Norwegians, since NOK 34.4 billion of the NOK 45.8 billion earned goes straight into the state treasury because of taxes.

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