US oil company Chevron Corp. on Friday reported its earnings surged
US oil company Chevron Corp. on Friday reported its earnings surged yet again to start 2007 as the oil company cashed out of a Netherlands venture and cashed in on lucrative refining margins that have contributed to high gasoline prices.
The 18 percent increase in Chevron's first-quarter profit delivered another reminder of the oil industry's moneymaking prowess while motorists dig deeper into their pocketbooks to fuel their cars. The economic disparity has renewed calls for a windfall tax on the industry to help raise money for alternative energy.
Chevron earned $4.7 billion, or $2.18 per share, during the first three months of the year, compared with net income of $4 billion, or $1.80 per share, at the same time last year.
The profit included a $700 million gain from Chevron's sale of a minority stake in a Netherlands refinery. If not for that one-time boost, Chevron said it would have earned $1.86 per share. That figure exceeded the average estimate of $1.67 per share among analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial.