OxyChem Q3 profit down 67% on weak US housing, auto markets

22 October 2009 13:41  [Source: ICIS news]

TORONTO (ICIS news)--Occidental Petroleum’s chemicals segment OxyChem posted third-quarter net earnings down 67%, to $72m (€48m) from $219m in the year-earlier period, because of continued weakness in the US economy, the energy and chemicals producer said on Thursday.

Weak housing, automotive and durable goods sectors translated into lower margins for OxyChem's caustic soda and polyvinyl chloride (PVC), as well as lower volumes for chlorine, caustic soda, potassium hydroxide and PVC, compared with the 2008 third quarter, the company said.

Chemical sales for the three months ended 30 September were $842m, down 42% from $1.45bn in the 2008 third quarter.

Overall, the Los Angeles-based energy major recorded third-quarter net income of $927m, down 59% from $2.3bn in the year earlier period. 

The decline was mainly due to lower crude oil and natural gas prices, which were only partially offset by higher oil and gas sales volumes and lower operating expenses, the company said.

($1 = €0.66)

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By: Stefan Baumgarten
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