With 2022 closed, ExxonMobil raked in a whopping US$55.7 billion in earnings for the full year, up from US$23.0 billion in 2021 – a US$32.7 billion increase, its Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Darren Woods reported to investors on Jan. 31.
The company earned US$19.7 billion in Q3 2022. In the second quarter, the company recorded US$17.9 billion in earnings, its largest quarterly record ever at that time. This was almost a four-fold increase in earnings made during the same period in 2021. In the 2022 first quarter, Exxon made US$$5.5 billion.
“The hard work and commitment of our people enabled us to deliver industry-leading operating and financial results and shareholder returns in 2022,” the CEO said. “While our results clearly benefited from a favorable market, the counter-cyclical investments we made before and during the pandemic provided the energy and products people needed as economies began recovering and supplies became tight.”
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Exxon’s fourth quarter result included unfavourable identified items of US$1.3 billion associated with additional European taxes on the energy sector and asset impairments. Its capital and exploration expenditures came in at US$7.5 billion in the fourth quarter, bringing full-year 2022 investments to US$22.7 billion.
Exxon said that other factors that impacted its results were price and margin improvements driven by recovering demand and tight supply, the favourable mark-to-market impact of unsettled derivatives, and volume increases on strong refining throughput and growth of advantaged assets.
Exxon’s structural cost savings now total US$7 billion. The company said it achieved an additional US$2 billion of savings during the year and is on track to deliver US$9 billion of total annual savings in 2023. The company said its cash increased to US$22.9 billion in 2022 with a free cash flow of US$62.1 billion.
This year, its shareholder distributions were US$29.8 billion, including US$14.9 billion in dividends and $14.9 billion of share repurchases. The company also increased and extended its share-repurchase programme with up to US$35 billion of cumulative share repurchases in 2023 to 2024.
Exxon’s net-debt-to-capital ratio improved to 5% it said, reflecting 2022 debt retirements of US$7.2 billion and a period-end cash balance of US$29.7 billion, further strengthening its balance sheet and providing greater financial flexibility.
“We leaned in when others leaned out,” Woods told investors. Looking ahead this year, the Exxon CEO said the company’s plan calls for further progress on its strategic objectives, which include leading the industry in safety, operating, and financial performance.
“We will continue to invest in our advantaged projects to deliver profitable growth, help meet society’s growing needs, and reduce emissions in our operations, while providing innovative solutions that help others reduce theirs,” he continued.
Exxon has a 45% stake in Guyana’s 6.6 million acres Stabroek Block, with Hess Corporation holding 30% and CNOOC 25%.