* Q2 EPS $0.69 vs Street $0.74
* U.S oil production disappoints
By Anna Driver
July 25 U.S. oil and gas company Noble Energy
Inc on Thursday reported quarterly earnings that fell
short of Wall Street expectations because U.S. oil production
was hurt by downtime and stormy weather.
Noble, which also has massive reserves of natural gas in the
eastern Mediterranean, is directing capital to boost production
of more valuable crude oil and natural gas that has a high
liquids contents, so any production hiccup can dent profits.
Output in the second quarter of 2013 was hurt by downtime at
a platform in the Gulf of Mexico that handles 12,000 barrels of
oil equivalent per day (boepd) from Noble's Galapagos field and
late winter storms in Colorado, Noble told analysts on a
Still, the disruptions are viewed as temporary, Dave Stover,
Noble's chief operating officer told investors on the company's
Analysts at Houston-based energy investment bank Tudor
Pickering Holt characterized the results as weak and said
Noble's U.S. oil production fell short of their forecasts.
Shares of Noble fell 1.3 percent to $63.70 in late morning
New York Stock Exchange trading. So far this year, the stock is
up 25 percent, compared with a 17 percent gain in the Standard &
Poor's 500 index.
Oil and gas sales volumes from continuing operations rose 24
percent to 260,000 boepd. Output was boosted as Noble reached
full production from its Tamar field offshore Israel during the
Profit in the second quarter was $377 million, or $1.04 per
share, compared with $292 million, or 79 cents per share, in the
same period a year earlier.
Excluding one-time items, the Houston company reported
earnings of 69 cents per share. Wall Street analysts on average
had expected a profit of 74 cents per share.
For the third quarter, Noble expects oil and gas sales
volumes of 285,000 to 295,000 boepd, a range with an increased
midpoint, Noble said.