Exxon and Chevron Report Record Profits on High Oil Prices

Exxon and Chevron Report Record Profits on High Oil Prices

Exxon said Friday its refining profits — profits from turning crude oil into gasoline and other fuels — jumped to $5.3 billion from a loss of $865 million a year ago. At Chevron, refining profits were $3.5 billion in the second quarter, down from $839 million a year earlier.

Rising energy costs have become a major contributor to inflation around the world and have drawn heavy criticism from energy producers. In June, Mr Biden said “Exxon has made more money than God this year”, as he criticized the company for not investing enough to increase production. Britain, home of BP and Shell, has announced a special tax on the “extraordinary” profits of oil and gas companies.

“Chevron is increasing energy supply, increasing investment, and we’re engaging constructively with Congress and this administration,” Pierre R. Breber, Chevron’s chief financial officer, said Friday on a call with investors to discuss results.

On Thursday, Shell chief executive Ben van Beurden blamed high energy prices on global market conditions and government policies that had discouraged investments in oil and natural gas.

“Ultimately our role is to provide the energy the world needs,” he said.

On Friday, Exxon and Chevron noted that they were increasing production in the Permian Basin, a shale oil field in Texas and New Mexico. But companies face pressure from shareholders not to overspend on expansion, said Faisal A. Hersi, energy analyst at Edward Jones.

“After years of overspending, these companies have found a religion and are focusing on capital spending discipline,” Mr. Hersi said. “They will try to increase production at this rate of 1-3%, which is an acceptable rate for investors as long as they are able to increase cash returns.”

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