ExxonMobil has reported a 57% drop year-on-year in second quarter profits.

The US supermajor posted net incomes of $6.9 billion for the past three months, compared to $15.91 billion during the same period last year.

ExxonMobil said that when the prior-year divestment earnings of $7.5 billion – led by a $5.3 billion profit on a downstream assets sale in Japan – were excluded, second quarter profits had fallen by 19%.

Earnings per share of $1.55 came in well below analysts’ expectations of $1.90 per share, according to the Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S database.

The company said that the Japanese divestment, along with  weaker refining margins and volumes stemming from planned turnaround and maintenance activities, had caused a steep drop in downstream earnings, with segment profits careening down $6.25 billion to $396 million.

Capital and exploratory expenditures also rose 10% year-on-year in the second quarter to $10.24 billion.

Upstream earnings declined by $2.05 billion in the second quarter to $6.3 billion, which ExxonMobil put down to prior-year farmout earnings off Angola and back costs paid to Rosneft for the Kara Sea and Black Sea ventures this year.

Total production also decreased by 1.9% in the second quarter.

Liquids production fell by 26,000 barrels per day to 2.182 million barrels per day, while gas output fell 307 million cubic feet per day to 11.354 billion cubic feet per day.

The supermajor said that both liquids and gas output were essentially flat for the quarter when the impact of entitlement volumes, OPEC quota effects and divestments were excluded.

For the first half of 2013, earnings of $16.36 billion were down 35% on the $25.36 billion garnered by the Irving, Texas-headquartered giant in the first six months of 2012.

The year-ago Angolan sale and higher expenses accounted for $2.3 billion of the drop, ExxonMobil said, with lower prices chopping off $140 million and lower sales volumes reducing earnings by $340 million.

Key developments for ExxonMobil over the period included first production at the Kearl oil sands project in Alberta and a string of new Russian joint ventures with Rosneft.


Information from Upstream was used in this report.