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ExxonMobil May Divest Stakes in Malaysian Upstream Resources

Zacks Equity Research

Exxon Mobil Corporation XOM is planning to divest oil resources located off the coast of Malaysia, per Bloomberg. The sale could reportedly fetch the integrated energy player $2-$3 billion.

ExxonMobil has four production sharing contracts with state-owned Petronas to produce oil and natural gas in the country. Notably, from the offshore operations in the South China Sea, East of Peninsular Malaysia, ExxonMobil with 30% equity interests has been producing Tapis crude — a high-quality oil with low sulphur content. According to the report, ExxonMobil is also looking to divest stakes in projects in countries like Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand and Australia.

Late last month, ExxonMobil announced a deal with Vår Energi AS to divest its Norwegian non-operated upstream assets. The transaction, likely to close in the December quarter of 2019, is valued at $4.5 billion. Per the accord, ExxonMobil will be divesting its stakes in more than 20 fields producing oil and natural gas. The company has estimated the fields’ daily combined production capacity at 150,000 barrels of oil equivalent. Once the deal closes, ExxonMobil will be concluding oil and gas production in Norway where it has presence for more than 100 years. Importantly, the refining and retail operations in Norway will be retained by ExxonMobil.

Importantly, the integrated energy firm has a broader plan to sell non-strategic properties worth $15 billion by 2021. The divestment decisions also underline ExxonMobil’s strong focus on boosting oil equivalent production volumes from onshore shale resources in the United States, mostly from the prolific Permian Basin. The company is also focusing on developing the discovered oil plays in Guyana.

Headquartered in Houston, TX, ExxonMobil currently carries a Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell). Meanwhile, better-ranked stocks in the energy space are Matrix Service Company MTRX, Shell Midstream Partners LP SHLX and Dril-Quip Inc DRQ. While Matrix Service and Shell Midstream sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Dril-Quip carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here

Matrix Service has managed to beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings in three of the past four quarters.

Shell Midstream has posted an average positive earnings surprise of 3.8% for the past four quarters.

Dril-Quip beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate in three of the trailing four quarters, the average earnings surprise being 49%.

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Shell Midstream Partners, L.P. (SHLX) : Free Stock Analysis Report
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Exxon Mobil Corporation (XOM) : Free Stock Analysis Report
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