Chevron Corp. reported earnings of $2.7 billion for this year’s first quarter compared with a loss of $725 million in same quarter in 2016. Included in the quarter was a gain of $600 million from the sale of an upstream asset. Foreign currency effects decreased earnings in this year’s first quarter by $241 million compared with a decrease of $319 million a year earlier.
The company’s sales and other operating revenues in the first quarter were $32 billion vs. $23 billion in the same period a year ago.
Chairman and Chief Executive, John Watson noted, “We benefitted from increasing crude oil prices and ongoing efficiencies being implemented across the company. We continue to make good progress on reducing our spend.”
Watson said, “Our operating expenses were reduced by about 14% from first-quarter 2016 and our capital spending declined over 30% from a year ago. We started up several new projects and have all three trains at Gorgon online. We also progressed our asset sales program. The combination of these actions contributed to a cash positive first quarter.”
Chevron’s worldwide net oil-equivalent production was 2.68 million b/d in the first quarter compared with 2.67 million b/d in first-quarter 2016. Production increases from major capital projects and base business were largely offset by production entitlement effects in several locations, normal field declines, and the impact of asset sales.
International upstream operations earned $1.4 billion in the first quarter compared with a loss of $609 million a year earlier. The increase was due to higher crude oil realizations, a gain of $600 million from the sale of the Indonesia geothermal business, higher natural gas sale volumes, and lower operating expenses.
US upstream operations earned $80 million in the first quarter compared with an $850-million loss in the same quarter a year ago. The increase was primarily due to higher crude oil realizations and lower depreciation and operating expenses.
International downstream operations earned $457 million in this year’s first quarter compared with $488 million a year earlier. The decrease was primarily due to lower margins on refined product sales.
US downstream operations earned $469 million in this year’s first quarter compared with earnings of $247 million a year earlier due to the absence of a first-quarter 2016 asset impairment, lower operating expenses as a result of decreased planned turnaround activity, and higher margins on refined product sales.
The company’s capital and exploratory expenditures in this year’s first quarter were $4.4 billion compared with $6.5 billion in the corresponding period in 2016.