OMV posts production, but weak financials

The Austrian energy company said its realized price for oil was up 30 percent from last year, but its price estimate for this year was lowered by 5 percent.
By Daniel J. Graeber Follow @dan_graeber Contact the Author   |   Aug. 10, 2017 at 5:46 AM
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Aug. 10 (UPI) -- ADDS COMMENTS FROM CEO THAT WEREN'T AVAILABLE AT THE TIME I WROTE THIS

Austrian energy company OMV said it planned to spend less as the price of oil levels out, but boasted of production gains from Libya and offshore Norway.

OMV was among the shares leading the decline in European trading after reporting an about-face in most of its major financial metrics for the second quarter. The company said profits and income both moved lower from the first quarter, while capital expenditures increased. Clean CCS, a metric the company uses to gauge its performance against its peers, was reported at $775 million, down 17 percent from the first quarter.

CEO Rainer Seele said cash flow, meanwhile, improved by more than $30 million from the first half of the year, which he said was impressive given the fact that the market is still weak by relative standards.

"This record value is even more impressive given the fact that OMV realized this cash flow in a low oil price environment of $52 per barrel -- proof that OMV has become fit and robust against oil price fluctuations," he said.

The company added, however, that overall performance was stronger because the average realized price for Brent crude oil was up 30 percent from last year at $51.72 per barrel. The company said that, for the year, it expected the price for Brent crude oil to average $52 per barrel, about 5 percent lower than its previous estimate.

Brent was priced at around $53 per barrel early Thursday.

Clean CCS for the first half of the year was roughly three times greater than over the same period last year. Its planned spending for the year, meanwhile, was lowered by 5 percent to $2.1 billion.

The company is among the larger regional producers and expects gains of 3 percent for total output to around 330,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day. Production from Norway increased, despite offshore maintenance efforts, and Libya contributed about 24,000 boe per day to OMV's portfolio during the quarter, even with the volatile situation there.

A worker issue during the weekend disrupted operations from Libya's largest oil field, though a spokesperson for OMV told UPI early this week the issue was resolved and production was recovering. Libya holds, by OMV's estimate, around 47 billion barrels of oil.

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