Statoil posts loss, cuts costs

OSLO, October 27, 2016 – Statoil announced a surprising loss for a second consecutive quarter on Thursday, a day after its attempts to cut costs came under scrutiny following several recent incidents.

The Norwegian oil giant posted USD 261 million in adjusted losses, down from a profit of USD 445 million in Q3 of 2015. Analysts surveyed by Bloomberg had predicted an average profit of USD 136 million.


A press release by the company said it was planning to reduce capex this year by USD 1 billion to USD 11 billion, and exploration expenses by USD 300 million to USD 1.5 billion.

“The financial results were affected by low oil and gas prices, extensive planned maintenance and expensed exploration wells from previous periods,” CEO Eldar Sætre said in the statement. “We delivered solid operational performance with strong cost improvements and progress on project execution.”

The announcement of the new cost cuts came just a day after Norway’s Petroleum Safety Authority asked the company to investigate whether its previous attempts to shore up its budget had compromised safety, after a series of fires and leaks at its facilities, Reuters reported.

The disappointing figures from Statoil, the first major production company to publish a Q3 report, came just days after a number of big oil and gas services companies, including Schlumberger, Halliburton and Technip, came out in the black. Baker Hughes, which posted a loss, also beat the expectations of analysts.