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News Summary: Exxon earnings up, production lower

The Associated Press

LOWER REVENUE, HIGHER PROFIT: Exxon net income edged up 0.5 percent in the first quarter to $9.5 billion, or $2.12 per share. Revenue fell 12 percent, though, to $108.8 billion from $124.1 billion.

PRODUCTION PROBLEMS: Exxon's oil and gas production fell 3.5 percent. Oil production slipped 1 percent. Natural gas output fell 5.9 percent worldwide, down 8.7 percent in the U.S. It was the seventh straight quarter in which production declined compared with the year earlier.

THE GROWTH: Exxon's chemicals division, U.S. refining operations and lower taxes helped boost profit. Chemicals profit grew 62 percent to $639 million. U.S. refining profit grew 72 percent to $1 billion.