Conoco Confirms It Will Sell $10 Billion In Assets In 2012


ConocoPhillips (COP) said Monday it expects production to decline 4.3 percent to 1.55 million barrels of oil equivalent per day (MMboepd) this year.

Speaking at the company's analyst meeting in New York, ConocoPhillips Chief Executive James J. Mulva said the company's production will be affected by its previously announced plans to sell $10 billion in assets this year. The company's previous 2012 production guidance was for 1.6 MMboepd.

Mulva said the company's average production in the next five years is expected to grow between 3 percent and 5 percent as the company focuses on oil-rich projects primarily in the U.S. and Canada.

Houston-based ConocoPhillips is in the midst of a three-year repositioning aimed at improving its balance sheet and making itself more attractive to investors. The plan includes the sale of $15 billion to $20 billion in assets, large-scale share buybacks and the spinoff of its refining arm, expected to be completed in the second quarter.

Monday's presentation was Mulva's last as ConocoPhillips CEO before he retires in June and hands the reins of the company over to a new leadership team.

Mulva said the $10 billion expected to come from assets dispositions this year will be spent in share buybacks. He added that starting in 2013 the company may continue to sell $1 billion to $2 billion per year of mature assets.

The executive also said that "when-issue" trading for Phillips 66, the spinoff of ConocoPhillips's downstream business, is expected to be April 12. When-issue refers to provisional trading before securities are issued.

Phillips 66 is expected to have a refining capacity of 2 million barrels a day, down from 2.2 million barrels a day in 2011.


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