Investors can expect an update on production –Chevron (CVX) is fresh from announcing a major oil discovery in the Gulf of Mexico. Analysts are certain to ask Chevron executives about how multiyear lows for oil prices have affected the company. Energy stocks, even blue chips like Chevron, have been hard hit recently by concerns about the global economy and lower prices for oil and gas.
Here’s what investors can expect:
Analysts polled by FactSet expect Chevron to report earnings of $2.53 a share, down from $2.57 a share a year ago. Sales are expected at $52.9 billion, down from $58.5 billion a year ago. Share price: Chevron shares have fallen about 7% so far this year. That compares with gains of around 7% for the S&P 500 (SPX).
The past three months have been particularly challenging for Chevron: shares have lost 12% of their value. Shares of larger rival Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM) have lost about 10% in the same period. Most analysts have a buy rating on Chevron and an average price target of $132.78 on the stock– representing 15% upside from its current price.
Analysts are sure to push Chevron executives for details about their capital spending plans, particularly in light of lower oil prices. Chevron is a big spender–capital expenditures were above $10 billion in the second quarter, and the company had outspent larger rival Exxon Mobil Corp, which kept expenses under the $10 billion-mark.
Chevron is also expected to outline plans for the Gulf of Mexico, where it is already one of the top producers. Last week, Chevron said it had found oil at the Guadalupe prospect in the Gulf of Mexico, alongside partner BP PLC. (BP) The deep water well is about 180 miles off the Louisiana coast. In a statement, Chevron said the Gulf is a “core focus area where we expect significant production growth over the next two years.” The company is likely to update analysts on one of its larger projects in the area, the Jacks/St. Malo, and to outline production expectations from some of its recent discoveries in the Gulf.