Saudi Aramco profit soars on higher prices and refining margins
Saudi Arabian state oil producer Aramco reported a 90 percent rise in second-quarter profits on Sunday, beating expectations, boosted by higher oil prices, volumes sold, and refining margins.
The company expects "oil demand to continue to grow for the rest of the decade, despite downward economic pressures on short-term global forecasts," Aramco chief executive Amin Nasser said in the earnings report.
Aramco's net profit rose to 181.64 billion riyals ($48.39 billion) for the quarter ending June 30 from 95.47 billion riyals a year earlier.
Analysts had expected a net profit of $46.2 billion, according to the mean estimate from 15 analysts.
Aramco declared a dividend of $18.8 billion in the second quarter, in line with its own target, which will be paid in the third quarter.
Aramco shares have risen over 25 percent this year as oil and natural gas prices have scaled multi-year highs after Western sanctions against major exporter Russia squeezed an already under-supplied global market.
Aramco joins other oil giants who have reported strong results in recent weeks. On July 29, Exxon Mobil Corp posted its biggest quarterly profit ever, a net income of $17.9 billion, an almost four-fold increase over the previous year.
Meanwhile, margins for making fuels like gasoline and diesel surged worldwide, boosting the profits of oil giants, including European majors Shell and TotalEnergies, both of which reported results on July 27.