Total profits fall despite high oil prices

PARIS (Reuters) - Oil major Total <TOTF.PA> posted a 6 percent drop in quarterly profits as high crude prices failed to make up for output losses in conflict-torn Libya and the North Sea, and weakness in its refining business.

Total said second-quarter net income, excluding one-offs and unrealized gains or losses related to changes in the value of fuel inventories, was 2.79 billion euros ($4.01 billion), below the 2.85 billion average forecast in a Reuters analysts poll.

In dollar terms, Total's underlying result was up 7 percent, far below the performance of rivals Royal Dutch Shell <RDSa.L> and Exxon Mobil <XOM.N>, which saw their profits rise 77 percent and 41 percent respectively.

(Reporting by Marie Maitre)