Suncor Energy reports lower net earnings in Q1
Weather outage cuts into oil sands output; operations returned to normal by the end of February.
CALGARY — Suncor Energy Inc. says net earnings in the first quarter of 2018 fell to $789 million or 48 cents per share, compared to $1.35 billion or 81 cents per share in the same period of 2017.
Net earnings included a $329-million non-cash foreign exchange loss and a non-cash gain of $133 million from an exchange of lands with Canbriam Energy Inc.
It missed analyst expectations of $1.05 billion or 63 cents as reported by Thomson Reuters.
Operating earnings, which strip out one-time and non-cash items, were $985 million or 60 cents per share, beating $812 million or 49 cents posted a year earlier as well as analyst predictions of $952 million or 53 cents per share.
Suncor says a “weather-related outage” at the company’s base camp north of Fort McMurray, Alta., resulted in lower production and upgrader utilization in the first quarter, although operations returned to normal by the end of February.
Suncor’s total upstream production came in at 689,400 barrels of oil equivalent per day in the three months ended March 31, compared to 725,100 boe/d in the prior year quarter, as oil sands output fell to 404,800 barrels per day from 448,500 bpd.
CEO Steve Williams said the loss of production and ongoing effects of deeper discounts paid for western Canadian heavy crude were offset by higher prices for its offshore production, higher realized profit margins in its refining and marketing arms and lower feedstock costs.