Failed offshore well takes a bite out of PPL’s earnings


April 28, 2010

KARACHI: A failed offshore exploration well caused Pakistan Petroleum’s earnings per share to fall to Rs7.01 from Rs7.23 in the third quarter of financial year 2010.

They decreased by 3.04 per cent as compared to the same period last year. The company’s field expenditure increased by 66 per cent in the wake of a dry well, Shark-1, the company’s offshore well in the Indus Basin. They posted a profit after tax of Rs6.98 billion for the current quarter, down 12.2 per cent from Rs7.95 billion in the same period last year. They did not declare a dividend. The company posted an aggregate profit of Rs16.7 billion in the nine months of the fiscal year 2010, down 20 per cent from the same period last year.

The company exceeded expectations of BMA Capital analyst, Hamad Aslam, who expected them to post earnings of Rs16.5 billion for the aggregate nine months of the fiscal year. It also exceeded expectations of First Capital Equities (FCEL) analyst, Faraz Farooq, who expected them to post earnings of Rs6.7 billion for the quarter. The company’s earnings per share grew 46 per cent this quarter compared to last quarter. This is mainly due to increases in oil and gas production and higher field expenditures. FCEL analysts expect PPL’s oil production to increase by five per cent to 4,700 barrels per day.

This would be a 26 per cent increase as compared to the previous quarter according to the predictions. They are basing their projections on better gas production at Manzalai in Tal Block which would more than offset the impact of lower volumes at Adhi and Mela. They also expect PPL’s gas production in the third quarter of the fiscal year 2010 to increase by 3 per cent compared to the same period last year, and eight per cent this quarter over last. This is based on improved averages at PPL’s Kandhkot, which increased by 16 per cent this quarter over the last and Manzalai which increased by 73 per cent this quarter over the last.

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