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Thursday, November 03, 2005

Chron reports on oil profit debate

Heaven knows that Mattsapundit personnel rip on the Chronicle now and then, but we also like to point out when they get something right, and this is one of those times.

In a business piece about oil company profits, our beloved hometown rag provided a pretty good balance:

Exxon Mobil Corp. alone rang up a $9.9 billion profit. Whether Exxon and its competitors will be able to persuade the public their earnings aren't really so huge remains to be seen. "You make nearly $10 billion in a quarter, and you're making more than number of Fortune 500 companies put together," noted Ed Rothschild, a longtime energy industry critic in Washington.
The story then turns to Exxon Mobil's point:
For their part, the oil companies have been trying to make the case their earnings aren't out of line. Exxon Mobil has taken out ads in major daily newspapers comparing oil and gas company earnings with other sectors. An ad headline "Oil and Apples," features a chart that shows pharmaceutical companies, banks, software firms and tobacco giants all earning more pennies on the dollar than energy companies. The ad shows energy companies earning 7.7 cents per dollar of revenue, and Exxon Mobil 8.6 cents, versus 7.9 cents for U.S. industry overall. With "a true 'apples to apples' evaluation — you see that oil earnings are not out of step with other major industries," the ad reads.
How about that?


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