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LyondellBasell Reports Second Quarter 2017 Earnings
HOUSTON and LONDON, July 28, 2017 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- Copyright (C) 2017 PR Newswire. All rights reserved

Second Quarter 2017 Highlights

-- Income from continuing operations: $1.1 billion

-- EBITDA: $2.0 billion

-- Record quarterly diluted earnings per share: $2.82 per share

-- Record quarterly EBITDA for Olefins and Polyolefins - Europe, Asia, and International: $699 million

-- Strong volume growth with a 27% increase in global ethylene production and a 45% improvement in refining crude volumes over prior year

-- Dividends and share repurchases totaled $0.8 billion; repurchased 5.4 million shares during the second quarter

-- Increased second quarter 2017 dividend by 6% to $0.90 per share

Comparisons with the prior quarter and second quarter 2016 are available in the following table:

LyondellBasell Industries (NYSE: LYB) today announced earnings from continuing operations for the second quarter 2017 of $1.1 billion, or $2.82 per share. Second quarter 2017 EBITDA was $2.0 billion.

"LyondellBasell's second quarter results demonstrate the value of our investments in capacity expansions and asset maintenance to deliver record quarterly earnings per share for the company. During the second quarter, our ethylene crackers in the United States and Europe operated at 98 percent and the refinery operated at 99 percent of nameplate capacity. Second quarter 2017 ethylene production volumes increased by 34 percent in the Americas and 13 percent in Europe compared to the second quarter 2016. Our strong operating rates were met with solid demand to drive improvements in global Olefins and Polyolefins chain margins and deliver record quarterly EBITDA for our Olefins and Polyolefins - Europe, Asia and International segment," said Bob Patel, LyondellBasell CEO.

"In addition to our earnings strength, we generated $1.2 billion of free cash flow during the second quarter, increased our quarterly dividend by 6 percent and advanced our organic growth and share repurchase programs," said Patel.

OUTLOOK

"More than 25 percent of the first wave of new United States ethylene capacity is now in the market and global olefin and polyolefin industry conditions remain favorable during July. With no major maintenance planned for the remainder of 2017, we are well positioned to deliver strong performance from LyondellBasell's global assets," Patel said.

LYONDELLBASELL BUSINESS RESULTS DISCUSSION BY REPORTING SEGMENT

LyondellBasell manages operations through five operating segments: 1) Olefins and Polyolefins - Americas; 2) Olefins and Polyolefins - Europe, Asia and International (EAI); 3) Intermediates and Derivatives; 4) Refining; and 5) Technology.

The following comments and analysis represent underlying business activity and are exclusive of LCM inventory adjustments. LCM stands for lower of cost or market. An explanation of LCM and why we have excluded it from our financial information in this press release can be found at the end of this press release under "Information Related to Financial Measures."

Olefins and Polyolefins - Americas (O&P-Americas) - Our O&P-Americas segment produces and markets olefins and co-products, polyethylene and polypropylene.

Three months ended June 30, 2017 versus three months ended March 31, 2017 - EBITDA increased $136 million versus the first quarter 2017. First quarter 2017 included a $31 million gain on the sale of property in Lake Charles, Louisiana. Compared to the prior period, olefin results increased approximately $100 million. Ethylene margins improved by approximately 3 cents per pound with declining feedstock prices for propane, butane and heavy liquids. Combined polyolefin results increased by approximately $80 million. Polyethylene and polypropylene spreads increased by 4 cents per pound and 5 cents per pound respectively, due to ethylene and propylene feedstock price decreases and higher polyethylene pricing, which was partially offset by small volume declines in polyethylene. Joint venture equity income decreased by $3 million.

Three months ended June 30, 2017 versus three months ended June 30, 2016 - EBITDA increased $105 million versus the second quarter 2016. Olefin results increased by approximately $150 million primarily due to an increase in ethylene production of approximately 34 percent due to planned maintenance in the second quarter of 2016. Combined polyolefin results declined approximately $25 million primarily due to declining margins in polypropylene partially offset by increased polypropylene sales volumes. Joint venture equity income declined by $9 million.

Olefins and Polyolefins - Europe, Asia, and International (O&P-EAI) - Our O&P-EAI segment produces and markets olefins and co-products, polyethylene and polypropylene, including polypropylene compounds.

Three months ended June 30, 2017 versus three months ended March 31, 2017 - EBITDA increased by $170 million versus the first quarter 2017. Olefin results increased approximately $135 million as ethylene margins improved by 9 cents per pound primarily due to lower feedstock costs. Combined polyolefin results increased approximately $15 million primarily due to improved margins for polypropylene and polypropylene compounds. Joint venture equity income was relatively unchanged.

Three months ended June 30, 2017 versus three months ended June 30, 2016 - EBITDA increased by $163 million versus the second quarter 2016, excluding an unfavorable $40 million quarter to quarter variance as a result of a 2016 LCM inventory adjustment. Olefin results increased by approximately $180 million as a result of improved ethylene margins and increased sales volumes due to planned maintenance which occurred in the second quarter of 2016. Combined polyolefin results declined by approximately $15 million primarily due to lower polyethylene spreads. Joint venture equity income declined by $29 million primarily due to declining polymer spreads and reduced volumes.

Intermediates and Derivatives (I&D) - Our I&D segment produces and markets propylene oxide (PO) and its derivatives, oxyfuels and related products and intermediate chemicals, such as styrene monomer, acetyls, ethylene oxide and ethylene glycol.

Three months ended June 30, 2017 versus three months ended March 31, 2017 - EBITDA was unchanged relative to the first quarter 2017, including the impact from first quarter charges related to the recovery of precious metals after catalyst changes. Excluding the precious metal adjustments, PO and derivatives results declined approximately $5 million, primarily due to lower volumes resulting from planned maintenance at our plant in Botlek, The Netherlands. After excluding the precious metal adjustments, intermediate chemicals results declined approximately $30 million primarily due to a 2 cent per pound decrease in styrene margins and a decrease in methanol volumes due to planned maintenance. Oxyfuels and related products results were relatively unchanged as reduced volumes from the Botlek maintenance offset seasonal margin improvements. Joint venture equity income was relatively unchanged.

Three months ended June, 30 2017 versus three months ended June 30, 2016 - EBITDA decreased $30 million versus the second quarter 2016, excluding an unfavorable $28 million variance as a result of an LCM inventory adjustment. PO and derivatives results were relatively unchanged. Intermediate chemicals results improved by approximately $15 million primarily from improvements in methanol and VAM margins. Oxyfuels and related products results declined by approximately $45 million due to lower margins coupled with reduced volumes resulting from planned maintenance at Botlek. Joint venture equity income was relatively unchanged.

Refining - The primary products of this segment include gasoline and distillates, including diesel fuel, heating oil and jet fuel.

Three months ended June 30, 2017 versus three months ended March 31, 2017 - EBITDA increased $55 million versus the first quarter 2017. The Houston refinery operated at 265,000 barrels per day, 72,000 barrels per day more than the prior quarter following completion of planned maintenance at the beginning of the second quarter. Results were negatively impacted by low industry margins reflecting weak discounts for heavy crude oil during May and June.

Three months ended June 30, 2017 versus three months ended June 30, 2016 - EBITDA increased $38 million versus the second quarter 2016. Second quarter 2017 throughput increased by 82,000 barrels per day due to maintenance during the second quarter of 2016. Second quarter 2017 margins were negatively impacted by unfavorable heavy to light differentials in crude oil markets.

Technology Segment - Our Technology segment develops and licenses chemical and polyolefin process technologies and manufactures and sells polyolefin catalysts.

Three months ended June 30, 2017 versus three months ended March 31, 2017 - EBITDA decreased by $12 million primarily due to lower catalyst volumes related to the timing of shipments.

Three months ended June 30, 2017 versus three months ended June 30, 2016 - EBITDA decreased by $25 million due to the timing of licensing revenue.

Capital Spending and Cash Balances

Capital expenditures, including growth projects, maintenance turnarounds, catalyst and information technology-related expenditures, were $407 million during the second quarter 2017. Our cash and liquid investment balance was $2.6 billion at June 30, 2017. We repurchased 5.4 million ordinary shares during the second quarter 2017, leaving 397 million common shares outstanding as of June 30, 2017. The company paid dividends of $361 million during the second quarter of 2017.

CONFERENCE CALL

LyondellBasell will host a conference call July 28 at 11 a.m. EDT. Participants on the call will include Chief Executive Officer Bob Patel, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Thomas Aebischer and Director of Investor Relations David Kinney.

The toll-free dial-in number in the U.S. is 800-475-8402. A complete listing of toll-free numbers by country is available at www.lyb.com/teleconference for international callers. The pass code for all numbers is 6934553.

The slides and webcast that accompany the call will be available at http://www.lyb.com/earnings.

A replay of the call will be available from 2 p.m. EDT July 28 until August 28 at 11:59 p.m. EDT. The replay dial-in numbers are 800-294-5423 (U.S.) and 402-220-9786 (international). The pass code for each is 2526.

ABOUT LYONDELLBASELL

LyondellBasell (NYSE: LYB) is one of the largest plastics, chemicals and refining companies in the world. Driven by its 13,000 employees around the globe, LyondellBasell produces materials and products that are key to advancing solutions to modern challenges like enhancing food safety through lightweight and flexible packaging, protecting the purity of water supplies through stronger and more versatile pipes, and improving the safety, comfort and fuel efficiency of many of the cars and trucks on the road. LyondellBasell sells products into approximately 100 countries and is the world's largest licensor of polyolefin and polypropylene technologies. More information about LyondellBasell can be found at www.lyondellbasell.com.

FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

The statements in this release and the related teleconference relating to matters that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are based upon assumptions of management which are believed to be reasonable at the time made and are subject to significant risks and uncertainties. Actual results could differ materially based on factors including, but not limited to, the business cyclicality of the chemical, polymers and refining industries; the availability, cost and price volatility of raw materials and utilities, particularly the cost of oil, natural gas, and associated natural gas liquids; competitive product and pricing pressures; labor conditions; our ability to attract and retain key personnel; operating interruptions (including leaks, explosions, fires, weather-related incidents, mechanical failure, unscheduled downtime, supplier disruptions, labor shortages, strikes, work stoppages or other labor difficulties, transportation interruptions, spills and releases and other environmental risks); the supply/demand balances for our and our joint ventures' products, and the related effects of industry production capacities and operating rates; our ability to achieve expected cost savings and other synergies; our ability to successfully execute projects and growth strategies; legal and environmental proceedings; tax rulings, consequences or proceedings; technological developments, and our ability to develop new products and process technologies; potential governmental regulatory actions; political unrest and terrorist acts; risks and uncertainties posed by international operations, including foreign currency fluctuations; and our ability to comply with debt covenants and service our debt. Additional factors that could cause results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements can be found in the "Risk Factors" section of our Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2016, which can be found at www.lyondellbasell.com on the Investor Relations page and on the Securities and Exchange Commission's website at www.sec.gov.

INFORMATION RELATED TO FINANCIAL MEASURES

This release makes reference to certain non-GAAP financial measures as defined in Regulation G of the U.S. Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. The non-GAAP measures we have presented include income from continuing operations excluding LCM, diluted earnings per share excluding LCM, EBITDA and EBITDA excluding LCM. LCM stands for lower of cost or market, which is an accounting rule consistent with GAAP related to the valuation of inventory. Our inventories are stated at the lower of cost or market. Cost is determined using the LIFO inventory valuation methodology, which means that the most recently incurred costs are charged to cost of sales and inventories are valued at the earliest acquisition costs. Market is determined based on an assessment of the current estimated replacement cost and selling price of the inventory. In periods where the market price of our inventory declines substantially, cost values of inventory may be higher than the market value, which results in us writing down the value of inventory to market value in accordance with the LCM rule, consistent with GAAP. This adjustment is related to our use of LIFO accounting and the recent decline in pricing for many of our raw material and finished goods inventories. We report our financial results in accordance with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles, but believe that certain non-GAAP financial measures, such as EBITDA and earnings and EBITDA excluding LCM, provide useful supplemental information to investors regarding the underlying business trends and performance of the company's ongoing operations and are useful for period-over-period comparisons of such operations. Non-GAAP financial measures should be considered as a supplement to, and not as a substitute for, or superior to, the financial measures prepared in accordance with GAAP.

EBITDA, as presented herein, may not be comparable to a similarly titled measure reported by other companies due to differences in the way the measure is calculated. We calculate EBITDA as income from continuing operations plus interest expense (net), provision for (benefit from) income taxes, and depreciation & amortization. EBITDA should not be considered an alternative to profit or operating profit for any period as an indicator of our performance, or as an alternative to operating cash flows as a measure of our liquidity. We have also presented financial information herein exclusive of adjustments for LCM.

Quantitative reconciliations of EBITDA to net income, the most comparable GAAP measure, are provided in Table 8 at the end of this release.

OTHER FINANCIAL MEASURE PRESENTATION NOTES

This release contains time sensitive information that is accurate only as of the time hereof. Information contained in this release is unaudited and subject to change. LyondellBasell undertakes no obligation to update the information presented herein except to the extent required by law.

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