REPORTING SEASON: Woodside Petroleum (WPL)
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Figure 1: Woodside Petroleum 12 month chart
Woodside (WPL) recorded a rise in profit despite oil price slump
Woodside Petroleum (WPL) posted a full-year underlying profit of $2.4bn for the 12 months ended 31 December 2014 which was in-line with market expectations.
Lower than forecast production costs, a rise in output and a substantial ~US$1.3bn jump in earnings from its Pluto LNG operations helped offset lower oil prices. The cashed up oil company, which has $3.2bn of cash on its books (47% more than 2013) seems happy to deal with its recently agreed acquisition of Apache before looking for other takeover targets.
WPL will pay eligible shareholders a US$1.44/share final dividend on 25 March 2015. The ex-dividend date is 25 February 2015.
Looking ahead, WPL has maintained production guidance of between 84-91 MMBOE for 2015, plans to reduce CAPEX by 20% and is expected to cut more than 300 jobs to reduce costs. WPL will remain sensitive to both currency and oil price moves. It estimates that a US$1 move in the Brent oil price could impact NPAT by US$25m while a $0.01 fall in the Australian dollar could increase NPAT by ~US$5m.