Marathon Oil profits plunge by half

Marathon's Brae Alpha platform
RockRose Energy's acquisition of Marathon Oil's UK business was the first example this year, OGUK said. Pictured is the Brae Alpha platform.

Houston’s Marathon Oil reported a $174 million net profit for the first quarter that fell about 50 percent from the first three months of 2018.

While much of the difference was from taxation and hedging benefits a year ago, Marathon saw its revenues dip from more than $1.5 billion down to $1.2 billion.

Crude oil started the year priced lower after taking a big dip at the end of 2018, but prices have since rebounded. Marathon Chief Executive Lee Tillman said the company’s projected oil and gas production hikes for 2019 remain on track without having to increase spending.

“With this significant operational momentum, we expect returns and free cash flow generation to inflect higher while our capital spending plans remain unchanged,” Tillman said.

Compared to last year, Marathon’s US oil and gas production rose – leaning particularly on South Texas’ Eagle Ford shale and North Dakota’s Bakken shale – while international volumes dipped.

Marathon also cited “extreme weather conditions” hampering its output during the quarter.

Earlier this year, Marathon chose to sell its United Kingdom-based business to focus more on US shale.

This article first appeared on the Houston Chronicle – an Energy Voice content partner. For more from the Houston Chronicle click here.

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