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Large losses in tar sands and the Arctic drag down Shell’s earnings

By on 29 Oct 2015 in news, notable posts

(Washington Post) Royal Dutch Shell reported weak third quarter earnings Thursday morning, hobbled by a triple whammy of low oil prices and losses related to suspended projects in the Arctic and Canadian tar sands.

The company lost $6.1 billion overall in the quarter, compared with a gain of $5.3 billion a year earlier. The oil giant took a staggering $7.9 billion in write-offs, including $2.6 billion for the dry hole drilled in Alaska’s Arctic waters, $2 billion related to the suspension of the Carmon Creek oil sands project and $3.7 billion due to lower oil and gas price forecasts, including $2.3 billion related to shale oil properties in the United States.

Shell’s results reflect not only the company’s frustrations but broader trends across the oil and gas industry, which is grappling with lower oil prices and disappointments in frontier areas that have been the repositories of hopes for future oil production.

Excluding items, the company made $ 1.8 billion in the quarter, versus $ 5.8 billion a year ago, when crude oil prices were nearly twice as high.

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