Photo: Shell CEO Ben van Beurden (Image courtesy of Shell)

Shell’s first-quarter profit slips

The Hague-based LNG giant Shell saw its first-quarter net profit edge down slightly as a result of lower realized oil prices. 

The company reported a net profit of $5.3 billion, 2 percent below the $5.5 billion reported in the first quarter of 2018.

The lower realized chemicals and refining margins, decreased oil prices and lower tax credits have partly been offset by stronger contributions from trading as well as increased realized LNG and gas prices compared with the first quarter 2018.

Royal Dutch Shell CEO Ben van Beurden, said, “Shell has made a strong start to 2019,” adding that the consistent financial performance across all of Shell’s businesses gives the company confidence in meeting its 2020 outlook.

Shell’s Integrated Gas business reported an increase in earnings compared to the corresponding quarter of 2018, due to higher realized LNG and gas prices increased contributions from LNG portfolio optimization and lower depreciation, partly offset by the impact of lower production and LNG sales volumes.

Segment earnings were at $2.6 billion, 5 percent above the earnings reported in the first quarter of 2018.

Total production was 12 percent lower compared with the first quarter of 2018, mainly due to divestments and the transfer of the Salym asset into the Upstream segment. Production reached 851,000 boe/day, compared to 972,000 boe/day in the corresponding period in 2018.

LNG liquefaction volumes decreased by 2 percent compared with the first quarter of 2018, mainly due to higher maintenance activities and divestments, partly offset by increased feed gas availability. Volumes reached 8.74 million tonnes in the quarter under review, 2 percent below the 8.9 million tons in the first quarter of 2018.

LNG sales volumes have also declined, reaching 17.51 million tonnes, 6 percent down from 18.58 million tonnes in the first quarter of 2018.

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