August 1, 2012 / 8:36 PM / 8 years ago

UPDATE 1-Williams Companies' second-quarter earnings decline

Aug 1 (Reuters) - Williams Companies Inc, which is a pipeline and gas processing company, reported lower second-quarter earnings on Wednesday, as a steep drop in natural gas liquids margins hurt results.

Feedstocks like propane and butane can be stripped from “liquids rich” natural gas and sold at a premium. But inventories are high, a factor that is depressing prices.

Williams, which warned on results last month, reported net income of $132 million, or 21 cents per share, compared with $227 million, or 38 cents per share, a year ago.

Earnings excluding items were 22 cents a share, in line with the company’s prior forecast.

Natural gas liquids margins fell 25 percent from a year ago, a factor that hurt profits at the company’s gas processing business, it said.

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