BHP Billiton Ltd. (ASX: BHP) has released its quarterly operational review today. According to the announcement, the production levels are in line with guidance previously announced to the market. The petroleum capital expenditure has however declined 6% from the previous guidance of US$3.1 billion. The company continues to expand its operations in regards with oil exploration in Western Australia and Western Gulf of Mexico.
According to the CEO, Andrew Mackenzie, “BHP Billiton remains on track to meet full-year production and cost guidance after a solid operational performance this quarter. In petroleum, we continue to reduce costs in both our Onshore US and Conventional businesses, and will meet our production targets with US$200 million less capital investment. We successfully acquire prospective oil acreage in Western Australia and the Western Gulf of Mexico and will continue to invest through the cycle to create value for shareholders.”
Currently BHP has four major projects under development in Petroleum, Copper and Potassium with a combined budget of US$7.0 billion.
Total petroleum production for the September quarter was 4% lower compared to pcp. The guidance however remains unchanged, despite lower planned capital investments. The crude oil, condensate and natural gas liquids production decreased by one percent compared to pcp. The natural gas production declined by 7% this quarter. This was due to the decision to defer development activity in US Onshore sites.
The company reported three percent lower copper productions for the quarter due to an anticipated grade decline at Escondida. The guidance for FY16 remains unchanged as the company is confident in its operational efficiencies.
BHP’s Jansen Potash project is 51% complete and is operating within the approved budget. This investment is concentrated on finishing the excavation and lining of production and service facilities and installation of essential surface infrastructure and utilities.
BHP’s share price is currently trading at $24.20 as of 11:00 AM (AEDT). It is down 9.2% for the year.
Author: Simon Herrmann
Oct 21, 2015
Simon is a financial analyst at independent research firm Wise-owl specialised in small-mid cap growth opportunities and ethical investment opportunities. Simon's aim is to disrupt the cliché approach to investment decision making as he believes that socially and environmentally responsible behaviour is a necessity to long-term wealth creation. Simon has a deep fundamental understanding of the global financial landscape and has compiled 300+ research reports, valuations and corporate appraisals. Simon is commonly featured in major media outlets and his research is published weekly in The Australian.