ExxonMobil's Chairman Rex Tillerson commented, "ExxonMobil's first quarter net income was a record $10,890 million, up 17% from the first quarter of 2007. Earnings per share were up 25% reflecting the impact of the continuing share purchase program. Higher crude oil and natural gas realizations, driven by record worldwide crude oil prices, were partly offset by lower refining and chemical margins, lower production volumes and higher operating costs.
"Spending on capital and exploration projects was $5.5 billion in the first quarter, up 30% from last year, as we continued to actively invest in projects to bring additional crude oil, natural gas and finished products to market.
"Share purchases to reduce shares outstanding were increased to $8.0 billion in the first quarter of 2008. The Corporation distributed a total of $9.9 billion to shareholders during the quarter through dividends and share purchases to reduce shares outstanding, an increase of 13% or $1.1 billion versus the first quarter of 2007."
First Quarter 2008 vs. First Quarter 2007
Upstream earnings were $8,785 million, up $2,744 million from the first quarter of 2007. Record high crude oil and natural gas realizations increased earnings approximately $4.4 billion. Volume and mix effects decreased earnings about $800 million, as increased natural gas volumes were more than offset by lower crude oil volumes. Higher taxes, increased operating costs and lower gains on asset sales decreased earnings approximately $900 million.
On an oil-equivalent basis, production decreased 5.6% from the first quarter of 2007. Excluding the Venezuela expropriation, divestments, OPEC quota effects and price and spend impacts on volumes, production was down 3%. Liquids production totaled 2,474 kbd (thousands of barrels per day), down 272 kbd from the first quarter of 2007. Excluding the Venezuela expropriation, divestments, OPEC quota effects and price and spend impacts on volumes, liquids production was down 6%. Increased production from projects in west Africa and the North Sea was more than offset by mature field decline, PSC net interest reductions and maintenance activities.
First quarter natural gas production was 10,246 mcfd (millions of cubic feet per day), up 132 mcfd from 2007. Higher European demand and North Sea project additions were partly offset by mature field decline.
Earnings from U.S. Upstream operations were $1,631 million, $454 million higher than the first quarter of 2007. Non-U.S. Upstream earnings were $7,154 million, up $2,290 million from 2007.
Corporate and financing expenses were $89 million, up $180 million, mainly due to higher corporate costs and tax items.
During the first quarter of 2008, Exxon Mobil Corporation purchased 110 million shares of its common stock for the treasury at a gross cost of $9.5 billion. These purchases included $8.0 billion to reduce the number of shares outstanding, with the balance used to offset shares issued in conjunction with the company's benefit plans and programs. Shares outstanding were reduced from 5,382 million at the end of the fourth quarter to 5,284 million at the end of the first quarter. Purchases may be made in both the open market and through negotiated transactions, and may be increased, decreased or discontinued at any time without prior notice.
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