Woodside Petroleum posts large profit drop

Woodside Petroleum has reported a net loss of almost $US4.03 billion ($A5.2 billion) for 2020 despite delivering a record full-year production of 100.3 million barrels of oil.

The company says the result was impacted by writedowns, namely the “non-cash impairments and onerous contract provision” it announced in July.

Underlying net earnings after tax came in at $US447 million, down from more than a billion US dollars in 2019.

Chief executive Peter Coleman says the potential strength of Woodside’s recovery is “already being signalled by the recent increase in oil price and record spot LNG prices achieved in Asia over the northern hemisphere winter”.

“Our disciplined balance sheet management has safeguarded Woodside’s financial resilience and positioned us to take advantage of emerging growth opportunities as markets recover,” he added.

The company has declared a final dividend of US 12 cents per share, bringing its full-year dividend to US 38 cps.

Its output topping 100 million barrels of oil equivalent is a first and comes “even though we weathered a direct hit from Tropical Cyclone Damien in February followed by operational challenges posed by the pandemic”, the company said in a statement on Thursday.

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