Shell net profit sinks 14pc in 2012; hikes payout

February 01, 2013 - 12:01:22 pm

LONDON:  Energy giant Royal Dutch Shell yesterday said its net profits sank 14 percent last year despite an upbeat final quarter, as the group battled headwinds including volatile oil and gas prices. The figure included the accounting effect of changes in the value of oil held in storage. 
Earnings after tax dropped to $26.59bn in 2012, compared with $30.92bn in the previous year, the Anglo-Dutch company revealed in its annual results statement. Net profits though rose 3 percent to $6.7bn  in the three months to December, from $6.5bn last time around. Production also grew by 3 percent to 3.41 million barrels of oil equivalent per day in the fourth quarter on a 12-month basis. 

Adjusted net profits — stripping out gains or losses from fluctuations in the value of inventories — jumped 13 percent to $7.29bn in the fourth quarter, as higher refining margins offset increased costs in exploration and production. Total revenues increased by 2 percent to $118.05bn in the last three months of 2012. 

“Shell is on track for plans we set out in early 2012, despite headwinds last year,” Chief Executive Peter Voser said in the earnings release. Shell also lifted its shareholder dividend for the fourth quarter by 2.4 percent to 43 cents per share, and expected to pay out 45 cents per share for the first quarter of 2013. That marked an increase of 4.7 percent.


Doha Insurance nets QR60.28m profit

Doha: Doha Insurance Company’s audited financial results for the year ended December 31, 2012, reveal a net profit of QR60.28m in 2012 compared to QR65.84m in 2011. The company’s EPS (Earnings Per Share) was QR2.58 in 2012 compared to QR2.81 in 2011, according to Qatar Exchange notification yesterday. The company’s Board of Directors has proposed to its General Assembly Annual Meeting the distribution of 10 percent cash dividend from the share par value or QR1 per share as well as giving bonus shares at 10 percent of the present  capital -- one bonus share for each 10 shares held. 


Qatar Cinema Co net profit down in 2012

Doha: The net profit of Qatar Cinema and Film Distribution Company for the year ended December 31, 2012, was down to QR12.76m compared to the QR13.37m in 2011. The company’s earnings per share (EPS) in 2012 amounted to QR2.23 as against QR2.34 in 2011, according to a Qatar Exchange notification yesterday. The company’s Board of Directors have recommended a cash dividend distribution of 20 percent or QR2 per share and to issue 30 percent shares for subscription at the par rate of QR10 plus a premium of QR18. Qatar Cinema and Film Distribution Company is the principal company in the field of arts and cultural entertainment in Qatar. It was established in 1970 by a group of Qatari contributors.


Emaar profit up 18pc

DUBAI: Emaar Properties said yesterday that its 2012 net profit rose 18 percent compared on year to $577m, as its retail and hospitality arms grew robustly. Revenues increased only slightly to $2.24bn from $2.21bn in 2011, with shopping malls and other retail businesses contributing $1.12bn, which was up 27 percent on an annual basis. The builder of Burj Khalifa said the visitor footfall at its grandiose Dubai Mall hit 60 million in 2012, more than 11 percent higher than the previous year. Revenues from hospitality and leisure businesses also increased 13 percent to $375m.


ANA net soars

TOKYO: Japan’s All Nippon Airways (ANA) said yesterday that its nine-month net profit soared 54.6 percent, as the carrier left its annual profit forecast unchanged despite its troubles with Boeing’s Dreamliner. Net profit in the nine months to December was 52.2bn yen ($574m) on solid business demand and programmes to promote leisure travel, it said. The airline said the full extent of the financial impact from a worldwide grounding of Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner was unclear. However, it said it expected to take a $15.4m hit on sales in January owing to 459 cancelled domestic and international flights in the month linked to the troubled next-generation aircraft. At least 379 flights would be cancelled in February, ANA said, as part of cuts that have affected tens of thousands of passengers. ANA said operating profit in the nine months to December rose 18 percent to 107.5bn yen on sales of 1.13 trillion yen, up 5.8 percent from the same period a year earlier.


ENBD net triples

DUBAI: Emirates NBD, Dubai’s largest bank by market value, yesterday said that its fourth-quarter net profit more than tripled on the back of lower impairments, beating analysts’ forecasts. The lender, 55.6-percent owned by state fund Investment Corporation of Dubai, made a net profit of Dh625m ($170.16m) in the three months to December 31, a statement from the bank said, compared with Dh152m in the same period last year.  Full-year profit for 2012 also rose, reaching Dh2.55bn against Dh2.48bn in 2011.


AstraZeneca slumps

LONDON: Shares in AstraZeneca slumped nearly 5 percent yesterday after the Anglo-Swedish drugs maker said its annual net profits had tumbled on patent expiries and warned that sales would dive further this year. Earnings after tax tanked 37 percent to $6.297bn in 2012, compared with $9.983bn in the previous year, the pharmaceuticals giant announced in a results statement. The blue-chip company added that turnover tumbled 15 percent to $27.973bn in 2012. Revenues also dived by 15 percent in the fourth quarter or three months to December, compared with the same period of 2011. That was the fourth consecutive quarter of decline. The bleak news sent the group’s shares sliding 4.49 percent to 3,011 pence, topping the fallers board on London’s FTSE 100 index of leading companies.


Toshiba surges six-fold

TOKYO: Japan’s Toshiba said net profit in the nine months to December soared six-fold to 54.52bn yen ($600m) thanks to brisk sales in its semiconductor and power plant businesses. For the April-December period, the firm also posted an operating profit of 98.3bn yen, up 12.1 percent year on year, on sales of 4.04 trillion yen, down 7.1 percent as troubles in its television unit weighed. The technology and engineering conglomerate kept its profit forecast for the fiscal year to March unchanged at 110bn yen, on sales of 6.1 trillion yen.


Chrysler profits up

CHICAGO: Chrysler predicted strong growth this year after its profits surged 68 percent in the fourth quarter thanks to booming sales in the United States, the automaker said yesterday. Total profits for the fourth quarter were $378m on revenues of $17.2bn, up from $15.1bn in the year-earlier quarter, the third largest US automaker reported. The quarter capped a strong year for the number three US auto maker, in which net income was up more than nine-fold to $1.67bn on a 19.6 percent gain in revenues, to $65.8bn. It forecast net profit will rise to $2.2bn in 2013 on global shipments of 2.6-2.7 million vehicles, compared to 2.4 million last year, and revenues in a range of $72bn to $75bn. Chrysler expects to capture a larger share of the growing US market this year and forecast its sales would rise to 1.9 million in 2013 from 1.7 million in 2012. It expects sales to rise another 100,000 units in the United States in 2014.


Deutsche Bank in red

FRANKFURT: Deutsche Bank, Germany’s biggest bank, said yesterday that writedowns and litigations costs pushed it into the red in the fourth quarter of last year and led to a sharp drop in full-year profits. Deutsche Bank said that it ran up a loss of ¤2.167bn ($2.9bn) in the period from October to December, compared with a profit of ¤147m euros a year earlier. At a pre-tax level, too, earnings were deeply in the red to the tune of ¤2.569bn in the October-December period compared with a year-earlier loss of ¤351m. The bottom-line loss was attributable to writedowns of ¤1.9bn and litigation-related charges of ¤1bn, the statement explained. At the same time, fourth-quarter revenues grew by 14 percent to ¤7.9bn, Deutsche Bank said.


Ericsson profit halves

STOCKHOLM: Telecom equipment provider Ericsson reported yesterday that net profit plunged by half last year, hit by a charge for joint venture ST-Ericsson, but posted higher than expected sales in the fourth quarter. The company also said it was confident about prospects this year as more operators boost their network capacity. In 2012, Ericsson made a net profit of 5.575bn kronor ($876m) on sales of 227.779bn kronor, about the same as in 2011. Ericsson said in December that it would book a charge of 8bn kronor after the announcement that French-Italian group STMicro was pulling out of ST-Ericsson. The joint venture has not reported a single quarter of profits since being created at the beginning of 2009. In the fourth quarter of last year it reported a net loss of $133m.


Facebook surges

SAN FRANCISCO: Facebook is increasing its revenue from mobile with more users now accessing the social network via smartphones and tablets than from personal computers, but Wall Street remains unimpressed. The company reported a $64m profit in the fourth quarter of last year, a steep drop compared with $302m 12 months earlier, while revenue grew 40 percent to $1.585bn. But expenses jumped 82 percent to $1.06bn and will keep rising given Facebook’s plan to hire aggressively and invest heavily in data centres. Facebook said earlier that its number of mobile users jumped 57 percent from a year ago to 680 million, and for the first time surpassed the number using computers, which came in at 618 million on average for December 2012. More than 600 million people used Facebook daily — a 28 percent increase from the previous year, with the rise driven by mobile, the company said.


Honda net doubles

TOKYO: Japanese carmaker Honda said yesterday that its net profit for the nine months to December 2012 more than doubled to $3.2bn as strong sales in North America and cost-cutting offset a strong yen. However, the maker of the Civic and Accord trimmed its 370bn yen year-to-March forecast, from a previous 375bn yen, as Tokyo’s ongoing territorial spat with China weighed on Japanese automakers. Honda said it logged sales of 3.81 million vehicles for calendar 2012, up from 3.09 million in 2011. That helped offset weakness in debt-hit Europe and a downturn in China stemming from the diplomatic row that sparked a consumer boycott of Japanese goods in China, the world’s biggest vehicle market. Honda said its nine-month net profit of 291.4bn yen was up from 139.9bn yen in the same period the previous year, while sales jumped 28.7 percent to 7.13 trillion yen.


NEC quarterly net up

TOKYO: Japanese information technology firm NEC said it had swung to a net profit in the October-December quarter, thanks in part to improved sales in defence systems and mobile networks. The firm’s quarterly profit came to 3.5bn yen ($38.5m), reversing an 86.5bn yen net loss in the same period a year earlier. Operating profit was 24.4bn yen, also reversing a year-earlier loss, on sales of 722bn yen, up 7.9 percent. Cost-cutting also helped results, it said. NEC left unchanged its forecast for the year until March of a 20bn yen net profit on sales of 3.15 trillion yen.


Sorouh Q4 net rises

DUBAI: Abu Dhabi’s Sorouh Real Estate, which has agreed to merge with Aldar Properties, reported an 21.2-percent rise in fourth-quarter net profit, driven by income from government projects and higher leasing revenue. Abu Dhabi’s second largest property developer by market value, posted a quarterly consolidated net profit of Dh118.9m ($32.37m), compared with Dh98.1m in the prior-year period, it said in a bourse statement yesterday. Revenue from Abu Dhabi’s national housing projects totalled Dh443m in the fourth quarter, up 41 percent year-on-year, said the firm. The leasing portfolio generated Dh67m of revenue in quarter, up 43 percent compared to the same period in 2011. Profit for 2012 was Dh442.6m compared with Dh334.7m for 2011. 


UPS posts loss in Q4

NEW YORK: United Parcel Service Inc reported fourth-quarter earnings below analysts’ estimates yesterday and forecast weaker-than-expected profit for 2013, sending its shares lower. UPS, the world’s largest package-delivery company, said it expects earnings to rise 6 percent to 12 percent in 2013, to $4.80 to $5.06 per share, which is below the average Wall Street target of $5.11. “We remain in a cycle of mixed growth and mixed signals,” Chief Executive Scott Davis told investors on a conference call.  The company posted a fourth-quarter net loss of $1.75bn, or $1.83 per share, after a $3bn non-cash charge for pension obligations. In the year-earlier period, it earned $725m, or 74 cents per share. The company said costs related to Superstorm Sandy, which pounded the New York metropolitan area in late October, sliced profit by 5 cents per share in the quarter. Revenue rose 2.9 percent to $14.57bn from $14.17bn. UPS shares fell 1.8 percent to $79.75 in pre-market trading. 


Nomura profit up 13pc

TOKYO: Japan’s top brokerage and investment bank Nomura Holdings said yesterday that it posted a 13 percent net profit rise for the October-December quarter, as it saw gains across its businesses. Nomura Holdings has been forced to cut costs to weather tough business conditions as it tries to move past an embarrassing insider trading scandal that led to the resignation of its chief executive last year. Nomura has embarked on an aggressive $1bn cost-cutting plan through to March 2014, a strategy credited for its 20.1bn yen ($221m) net profit in the October-December quarter. Revenue in the period slipped four percent to 389.1bn yen, but Nomura said the drop was unrelated to its core businesses. In October, Tokyo’s stock exchange imposed a record fine of about $2.5m on Nomura in the wake of the insider trading scandal which prompted the resignation of its chief Kenichi Watanabe.

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