Hess (NYSE:HES) reported on Wednesday a dramatically lower fourth-quarter profit, hurt primarily by a large drop in its refining business, which swung to a loss during the period.
The New York-based oil exploration and production company posted net income of $58 million, or 18 cents a share, compared with $358 billion, or $1.10 a share, in the same quarter last year, widely missing the Street’s view of $1.25 a share. The latest results included a writedown of about $340 billion.
Revenue was $9 billion, up from $8.6 billion a year ago, and topping average analyst estimates polled by Thomson Reuters of $7.23 billion.
Exploration and production earnings were down to $420 million compared with $494 million in the year-earlier period, a reflection of higher exploration expenses, partially offset by increased selling prices.
Hess had roughly 1.54 million barrels of oil equivalent a day, improved from about 1.44 million a year ago.
Its marketing and refining segments, meanwhile, booked a loss of $261 million in the fourth-quarter, down from a profit of $17 million in 2009, led by a large drop in refining operations.