Imperial Oil Ltd first-quarter profit cut in half — but the oilsands giant still plans to jack output

Imperial Oil, which operates oilsands mining facilities as well as refineries and Esso-brand gasoline stations in Canada, has said it will continue with plans to expand output despite falling crude prices.

Imperial Oil Ltd., the Canadian oilsands company of Exxon Mobil Corp., reported on Thursday that first-quarter profit fell by more than half as crude prices tumbled by over fifty percent.

Net income dropped to $421 million, or 50 cents a share, from $946 million, or $1.11, last year, the Calgary-based company said inside a statement on CNW Thursday. Excluding one-time items, per-share profit exceeded the 40 Canadian-cent average of 10 analysts\’ estimates published by Bloomberg.

Imperial, which operates oilsands mining facilities as well as refineries and Esso-brand gasoline stations in Canada, has stated it will continue plans to expand output despite falling crude prices.

West Texas Intermediate oil, the U.S. benchmark, averaged US$48.65 a barrel in the first quarter, down 51 percent from the year-earlier period.

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