HOUSTON (July 30, 1 p.m. ET) — LyondellBasell Industries NV's second quarter figures beat market expectations, partly as a result of low-cost shale gas, which helped offset the price of crude oil.
However, overall second quarter net income fell to $768 million, down from $803 million for the same period in 2011. Income from its North American olefins division, which uses shale gas, rose 38 percent while by contrast income from its European olefins operations, which primarily uses oil-derived naphtha, remained largely flat.
“While we expect global economic uncertainty to continue and related volatility to limit our near-term visibility, we remain focused on the fundamentals. In North America, current ethane and propane raw material prices position our North American olefins business to remain advantaged relative to global ethylene producers,” explained Jim Gallogly, LyondellBasell CEO.
“On the other hand, our European olefins and polyolefins business will be challenged, and thus we will continue efforts to improve our relative cost position,” he added.
“Safe and reliable operations, proprietary technologies, and access to low cost feedstocks in the US and Middle East position us well to generate strong earnings and free cash flow. LyondellBasell is poised to move forward to a new chapter in which we are pursuing growth projects targeted to take advantage of opportunities created by North America's shale gas development.”