Refining margins boost 4Q profit at Exxon Mobil

Published on NewsOK Modified: February 1, 2013 at 7:05 pm •  Published: February 1, 2013

Other oil refiners have also reported better margins this earnings season as they switched from foreign crude to cheaper U.S. oil. On Friday, benchmark U.S. crude oil was trading at about $97 per barrel, $19 less than the same amount of Brent crude, the measuring stick for international sources of oil.

At Exxon's U.S. Gulf Coast refineries, "We have more than tripled the processing of (cheaper) North American crude over the last couple of years," the company's vice president of investor relations, David Rosenthal, told analysts on a conference call. He declined to give precise figures or percentages.

Irving, Texas-based Exxon Mobil said it spent $5 billion during the quarter buying back its own shares and plans to spend another $5 billion on buybacks in the first three months of 2013.

Exxon shares rose 7 cents to close at $90.04 Friday. They gained 4 percent in January.

Chevron Corp., the No. 2 U.S. oil company, reported that fourth-quarter net income rose 41 percent to $7.23 billion. That result was helped by a gain of $1.4 billion related to an exchange of assets in Australia.