Energy Companies Post Mixed Results

From Times Wire Services

Several companies joined a growing list of oil firms that have reported strong profits despite low crude prices in the spring, although the low crude prices worked to depress earnings at others.

* Chevron Corp. reported that second-quarter earnings jumped 60% to $648 million, compared to $404 million in last year's second quarter. Revenue rose to $8.9 billion from $8.2 billion.

Refining and marketing, known in the industry as "downstream" operations, were the source of the San Francisco company's biggest gain. U.S. downstream operations reported record earnings of $370 million in the quarter, compared to $103 million in the year-ago period.

"We are particularly pleased with the strong operating performance of our U.S. downstream business during the second quarter," said Chairman and Chief Executive Ken Derr. "As the nation's largest refiner and marketer, we benefited significantly from strong product sales margins, which in part reflect progress in our programs to upgrade our refinery and service station network."

For the first half, Chevron earnings rose to $1.12 billion from $717 million in last year's first half. Revenue rose to $18.3 billion from $15.9 billion.

* Mobil posted a 24.2% increase in earnings to $498 million, compared to $401 million in the year-ago quarter. Revenue fell to $13.82 billion from $14.03 billion.

The 1990 quarter included a net gain of $182 million from the sale of two major assets, while the company posted a $140-million loss on the sale of southern Africa operations in last year's second quarter.

For the first half, Mobil had earnings of $898 million, compared to $830 million in the like period last year. Revenue rose slightly to $28.85 billion from $28.05 billion.

* Texaco, the nation's third-largest oil company, said net income during the quarter totaled $353 million, down from $366 million a year ago.

Revenue rose 3% to $8.72 billion from $8.45 billion a year ago, largely because of higher crude and oil product sales volumes.

In addition to lower crude prices during the second quarter, natural gas prices also fell and petrochemical results were "significantly lower . . . because of oversupply and reduced demand," Texaco President and Chief Executive James W. Kinnear said in a statement from the company's White Plains, N.Y., headquarters.

For the year's first half, Texaco reported net income of $681 million down 63% from $1.82 billion in the year-ago period, which included a $1.19-billion gain from the sale of Texaco Canada Inc. Without the gain, this year's net income was up 8%, the company said.

First-half revenue was off 1% at $17.88 billion from $18.06 billion.

* Phillips, of Bartlesville, Okla., reported second-quarter net income of $105 million, down from $197 million a year ago.

The recent quarter included $58 million in insurance reimbursement that compensated for lost earnings at Phillips' Houston chemical complex, which was shut down after an accident in October, 1989 and remains closed.

Revenue declined 9% to $2.98 billion from $3.3 billion a year ago.

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