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Chevron Posts First  Annual Loss in Decades
Chevron Posts First  Annual Loss in Decades

Chevron Posts First Annual Loss in Decades

Chevron Posts First Annual Loss in Decades

Chevron Corp. posted its first annual loss since at least 1980 as the world’s biggest oil companies struggle to emerge from the worst collapse in a generation. 
The American giant had a $497 million loss last year and failed to replace all of the crude and natural gas it pumped with new reserves, San Ramon, California-based Chevron said in a statement on Friday, Bloomberg reported.
As the first so-called supermajor oil company to post year-end results, Chevron’s earnings may herald bleak news for an industry battered by the oil-market crash that began in mid 2014. After hundreds of thousands of job cuts, billions of dollars in asset sales and the accumulation of staggering debt loads to endure the collapse, investors have been optimistic that oil producers who survived the darkest days are on the cusp of a new era of growth.
After the 2016 loss, Chevron probably will be able to cover all of its costs this year with cash flow and generate excess cash as soon as 2018, said Brian Youngberg, an analyst at Edward Jones & Co. 
Major oil and gas projects that required huge cash infusions during the past several years are mostly complete and poised to begin contributing profits, he said.
Fourth-quarter net income of $415 million, or 22 cents a share, was lower than all 20 estimates from analysts in a Bloomberg survey. During the final three months of 2016, the company’s refineries earned $357 million, less than half the $762 million expected by analysts at Barclays Plc. 
Chevron announced plans last month to curtail spending on drilling and other projects for a fourth straight year. 
Despite the belt-tightening, Chevron is on pace to spend about $2 billion on shareholder dividends each quarter. Bigger rival Exxon Mobil Corp. is set to disburse about $3.1 billion per quarter in payouts.

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