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Chevron books $665 million loss as revenues sink

U.S. oil major Chevron managed to cut its losses in the fourth quarter of 2020 compared to the same period in 2019 despite a significant decrease in revenues affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Chevron Corporation on Friday reported a loss of $665 million for the fourth quarter of 2020, compared with a loss of $6.6 billion in the fourth quarter of 2019.

Included in the current quarter was a charge of $120 million associated with Noble Energy acquisition costs.

To remind, Chevron completed its previously announced acquisition of Noble Energy, following approval by Noble Energy shareholders, in early October 2020.

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Chevron noted that the foreign currency effects decreased earnings by $534 million. Adjusted loss of $11 million in fourth-quarter 2020 compares to adjusted earnings of $2.8 billion in fourth-quarter 2019.

The oil company also reported a full-year 2020 loss of $5.5 billion compared with earnings of $2.9 billion in 2019.

Chevron’s revenues in fourth-quarter 2020 were $25.25 billion, compared to $36.35 billion in the year-ago period.

“2020 was a year like no other”, said Mike Wirth, Chevron’s chairman of the board and chief executive officer.

“We were well-positioned when the pandemic and economic crisis hit, and we exited the year with a strong balance sheet, having completed a major acquisition and increased our dividend payout for the 33rd consecutive year”.

For Chevron, worldwide net oil-equivalent production was 3.28 million barrels per day in fourth-quarter 2020, an increase of 6 per cent from a year ago.

The increase was largely due to the Noble Energy acquisition, partially offset by production curtailments.

Worldwide net oil-equivalent production for the full-year 2020 was 3.08 million barrels per day, an increase of 1 per cent from the prior year.

Chevron’s U.S. upstream operations earned $101 million in fourth-quarter 2020, compared with a loss of $7.47 billion a year earlier.

The increase was primarily due to the absence of fourth-quarter 2019 impairments of $8.2 billion, partially offset by lower crude oil realizations.

Capital and exploratory expenditures in 2020 were $13.5 billion, compared with $21 billion in 2019.