Weak oil prices hurt Exxon Mobil and Chevron results

Exxon Mobil Image copyright Reuters

Plunging crude oil prices weighed on quarterly earnings at the world's biggest oil company.

Exxon Mobil reported it earned $4.2bn (£2.68bn) in the second quarter, which marked a drop of more than 50% from last year.

Profits increased in the company's chemical unit during the period, but that was not enough to offset the oil price drop.

Since last year, Brent crude oil prices have fallen more than 40%.

Crude impact

"Our quarterly results reflect the disparate impacts of the current commodity price environment, but also demonstrate the strength of our sound operations, superior project execution capabilities, as well as continued discipline in capital and expense management," said Rex Tillerson, Exxon Mobil's chairman and chief executive officer.

The massive drop in crude oil prices also weighed on results at oil producer, Chevron.

Second quarter profit fell 90% from last year, to $571m (£365m).

"Second quarter financial results were weak, reflecting a crude price decline of nearly 50% from a year ago," Chevron chief executive officer, John Watson, said.

"Our upstream businesses were particularly hard hit, as lower prices reduced revenues and triggered impairments and other charges," Mr Watson added. "Downstream operations continued to deliver strong financial performance, reflecting both high reliability and improved margin."

Oil giant Royal Dutch Shell announced yesterday it has shed 6,500 jobs as part of cost-cutting plans as it seeks to counter falling oil prices.

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