Total's Profits Bolstered by Refining

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Oil pumpjackTotal S.A. (NYSE: TOT) reported fourth-quarter and full-year 2012 results before markets opened this morning.

For the quarter, the French oil giant posted adjusted diluted earnings per share (EPS) of $1.76 on revenues of $64.66 billion. In the same period a year ago, the company reported adjusted EPS of $1.85 on revenues of $62.38 billion. Fourth-quarter results also compare to the Thomson Reuters consensus estimates for EPS of $1.68 and $62.79 billion in revenues.

For the full year, EPS totaled $7.01 on revenues of $257.04 billion, compared with a consensus estimate for EPS of $7.25 on revenues of $251.89 billion.

The company's CEO said:

In 2012, Total again delivered solid performance with net income of 12.4 billion euros and reinforced its strong financial position. The environment remained favorable in the Upstream, with Brent prices above 110 $/b and, in the Downstream, refining margins benefited from a temporary rebound at mid-year.

The refining margin the CEO mentioned averaged $33 per metric ton in the fourth quarter, more than double the margin of $15.1 per ton in the same period a year earlier. Third quarter 2012 refining margins came in at $51 a ton.

But, as with all major integrated oil companies, it is the upstream segment that controls revenues and profits, and Total's upstream net income fell by more than €200 million in the fourth quarter and by about €20 million for the year. Those third-quarter refining margins generated €646 million in downstream operating income, more than the segment's total operating income in 2011.

The consensus estimate calls for first quarter EPS of $1.70 on revenues of $66.33 billion. For the full year, EPS is estimated at $7.22 on revenues of $257.14 billion.

Total's American depositary receipts (ADRs) are trading up about 1.2% in the premarket this morning, at $52.00. The 52-week range is $41.75 to $57.06. Thomson Reuters had a consensus analyst price target of around $56.90 before today's report.

Filed under: 24/7 Wall St. Wire, Earnings, International Markets, Oil & Gas Tagged: TOT
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