Imperial Oil posts profit of more than $1 billion in third quarter

An Esso-branded gas station, one of 497 sold by Imperial Oil this year. Wikipedia photo.

CALGARY, A.B. – Imperial Oil is reporting a third quarter profit of roughly $1-billion for the first time in more than two years, after selling a number of its gas stations.

The Calgary-based oil and gas company reported gains of $716-million, worth 84 cents per share, after selling its gas stations.

As a result, Imperial’s net income more than doubled from a year ago to $1.003 billion or $1.18 per diluted share for the third quarter, up from $479 million or 56 cents per diluted share in the same quarter last year.

Its upstream operations — which include oilsands production — had a loss of $26 million, compared with a $52 million loss a year ago.

Meanwhile, its downstream operations, which included the retailing arm, benefited from the asset sales as well as improved refinery operations and higher sales volumes, partially offset by lower margins. They earned $1.002 billion in the quarter, compared with $454 million in the same period of 2015.

The last time Imperial’s quarterly profit was above $1 billion was in the second quarter of 2014.