Occidental posts bigger-than-expected loss as pandemic slams oil prices

(Reuters) - Occidental Petroleum Corp on Monday posted a bigger-than-expected quarterly loss as the COVID-19 pandemic sapped fuel demand and hammered prices.

The U.S. oil producer, struggling with debt raised for its $38 billion purchase of rival Anadarko Petroleum last year, recorded $6.6 billion in charges due to impairments in its oil and gas properties.

Prices for its crude oil fell about 61% to $23.17 per barrel in the second quarter, even as average production of 1.41 million barrels of oil equivalent per day (boepd) exceeded the midpoint of its guidance by 36,000 boepd.

Occidental has cut jobs, slashed its dividend, reduced its spending plans and sold assets to shore up its finances.

The company said in June it plans to replace $9.12 billion in notes due in 2021 and 2022 and issue new notes that would remove provisions that could have pushed it into default.

Net loss attributable to common stockholders was $8.35 billion, or $9.12 per share, in the quarter, compared with earnings of $635 million, or 84 cents per share, a year earlier.

The company booked $1.58 billion from tax refunds during the quarter, which helped reduce its operating loss

Excluding items, the company lost $1.76 per share, compared with analysts' average estimates of $1.68, according to Refinitiv IBES.

(Reporting by Arathy S Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)

08/10/2020 20:43

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