Noble Q4 Earnings Beat On Strong U.S. Onshore Growth

Noble Energy, Inc.  (NBL - Free Report) incurred adjusted earnings of 32 cents per share for the fourth quarter of 2017, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 4 cents by a whopping 700%.

On a GAAP basis, the company reported earnings of $1.01 per share against a loss of 59 cents in the year-ago quarter.

The difference between adjusted and GAAP figures was caused by the combined effect of loss on divestiture and undeveloped leasehold impairment, offset by a gain from divestitures.

Noble Energy Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

Noble Energy Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise | Noble Energy Inc. Quote

Total Revenues

Noble Energy's total revenues increased around 18.9% year over year to $1,201 million in the fourth quarter. Reported revenues also surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1,152 million by 4.3%.

Operational Results

In the quarter under review, sales volume averaged 380 thousand barrels of oil equivalent per day (MBoe/d), which is at the low end of the guided range of 380-390 MBoe/d. Volumes in the quarter were impacted by nearly 7 MBoe/d as a result of winter storms and third-party facility impacts in the company's Texas operations.

U.S. onshore assets are a major contributor to the total sales volume, contributing nearly 249 MBoe/d in the fourth quarter. Onshore sales volume was up 40% year over year, primarily due to solid contribution from Noble’s Eagle Ford and Delaware Basin assets.

Operating expenses in the quarter was $740 million compared with $1,373 million in the year-ago quarter, reflecting a decline of 46.1% primarily due to lower exploration expenses, Gathering, Transportation and Processing expenses and drop in depreciation, deletion, and amortization.

Interest expenses in the quarter were $83 million, down 3.5% year over year.

Noble Energy’s total proved reserves at the end of 2017 were 1,965 million barrels of oil (MBoe) compared with 1,437 MBoe at the end of 2016.

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