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Murphy Puts Up $40M 1Q Profit After Malaysian Sale, Gulf Purchase

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After divesting major Asian assets and raising its exploration stake in the Gulf of Mexico, Murphy Oil Corp. of El Dorado announced first-quarter financial results Thursday morning, including net income of $40 million and an adjusted net profit of $27 million excluding the discontinued operations and one-off items.

The adjusted total amounted to 15 cents per share of common stock.

Murphy announced it was divesting all its Malaysian assets in March for $2.1 billion in cash, and Thursday’s report listed all operations as “discontinued operations” held for sale for financial reporting purposes.

The first-quarter results were filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission before the opening of U.S. markets Thursday. After the first quarter’s end, Murphy agreed to acquire offshore oil fields in the Gulf of Mexico for $1.37 billion, using some proceeds from the Malaysian sale. The company also reported it had received regulatory approval to operate the Gulf assets acquired from Petrobras America Inc., an arm of the Brazilian national petroleum giant.

Total revenue was up considerably year over year, to $591 million, compared with first-quarter 2018 revenue of $375 million. The income and revenue numbers beat analysts’ predictions.

Murphy President and CEO Roger W. Jenkins said it was a busy quarter for the company.

“We demonstrated again that we are proven deal-makers by successfully executing agreements to divest our Malaysia assets, which are becoming gassier, followed shortly thereafter by an agreement to deploy the expected proceeds by acquiring oil-weighted, tax-advantaged Gulf of Mexico assets further enhancing our ability to generate cash flow,” Jenkins said in a company statement.

“While our lower than planned production across our North American business was disappointing, many of the causes were one-off events and are now behind us, with production stabilized as we move into the second quarter.”

He said the company would continue offering investors a competitive dividend, and would proceed with share repurchase plans, “all while keeping forward investment in our assets in line with cash flows.”

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