Royal Dutch Shell - oil prices hit profits 2

Royal Dutch Shell – oil prices hit profits


Royal Dutch Shell - oil prices hit profits

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Underlying profits fell 15% in the third quarter, to $4.9bn, as lower production and weaker prices, weighed on performance in the Upstream oil & gas business.

The scale of debt reduction and buyback plans remain unchanged, but the pace may be slower than previously expected given changing conditions. The quarterly dividend remains unchanged at 0.47 cents per share and the group announced the next $2.75bn tranche of its share buyback.

The shares fell 3.4% in early trading.

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Third Quarter Results

The Integrated Gas business saw underlying profits rise 17% to $2.7bn, driven by higher liquid natural gas (LNG) sales and LNG trading. Upstream profits fell 52% to $907m, as production declined 2% and oil and gas prices dropped substantially.

Profits rose 7% in the Downstream business to $2.2bn, with healthy growth in Oil Products, offset by a weaker Chemicals result – where the group contended with reduced production and lower margins.

Losses in the corporate centre hit $817m, up 106.8% year-on-year, as the group suffered from adverse currency movements and lower tax credits.

Quarterly cash flows from operations rose 1% to $12.3bn, with free cash flow of $10.1bn. Shell reported capital expenditure of $6.1bn in the quarter, up 3.3% on a year earlier.

Gearing, a measure of debt as a percentage of total capital, stood at 27.9% at the end of the quarter.

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