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Hess Misses on Q4 EPS, Sells Utica Acreage

By Eric Volkman – Jan 29, 2014 at 7:07PM

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Hess posts a leap in non-adjusted profit because of asset sales. It will book another with the divestment of 74,000 acres in the Utica Shale.

Quite a bit more non-adjusted profit is pumping from Hess (HES -0.10%), according to the company's just-released preliminary Q4 results. For the quarter, revenue was $5.6 billion, down from the $5.9 billion in the same period the previous year. Attributable net income, however, saw a notable jump to $1.9 billion ($5.76 per diluted share), from Q4 2012's $374 million ($1.10).

Much of the bottom-line improvement came from sales of numerous assets, which has so far brought in roughly $7.8 billion in total proceeds.

On an adjusted basis, however, the company's net landed at $319 million ($0.96 per diluted share) from the year-ago tally of $409 million ($1.20). Analysts had been projecting $1.08 for this most recent quarter. 

Hess isn't finished selling parts of its business. Today, the company also announced that it signed an agreement to divest around 74,000 acres of its dry gas acreage in the massive Utica Shale play covering the northeastern U.S. and Canada. The buying party was not revealed, but Hess did say that the price was $924 million. It will receive roughly two-thirds of the money at the end of the current quarter, and the balance in Q3 of this year.

Eric Volkman has no position in Hess. Nor does The Motley Fool. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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