January 29, 2021 — Chevron Corporation today reported a loss of $665 million ($(0.33) per share – diluted) for fourth quarter 2020, compared with a loss of $6.6 billion ($(3.51) per share – diluted) in fourth quarter 2019.
Included in the current quarter was a charge of $120 million associated with Noble Energy, Inc. acquisition costs. Foreign currency effects decreased earnings by $534 million. Adjusted loss of $11 million ($(0.01) per share – diluted) in fourth quarter 2020 compares to adjusted earnings of $2.8 billion ($1.49 per share – diluted) in fourth quarter 2019.
Chevron reported a full-year 2020 loss of $5.5 billion ($(2.96) per share – diluted), compared with earnings of $2.9 billion ($1.54 per share – diluted) in 2019. Included in 2020 were net charges for special items of $4.5 billion, compared to net charges of $8.7 billion for special items in 2019.
Foreign currency effects decreased earnings in 2020 by $645 million. Adjusted loss of $368 million ($(0.20) per share – diluted) in full-year 2020 compares to adjusted earnings of $11.9 billion ($6.27 per share – diluted) in full-year 2019.
Sales and other operating revenues in fourth quarter 2020 were $25 billion, compared to $35 billion in the year-ago period.
“2020 was a year like no other,” said Mike Wirth, Chevron’s chairman of the board and chief executive officer. “We were well positioned when the pandemic and economic crisis hit, and we exited the year with a strong balance sheet, having completed a major acquisition and increased our dividend payout for the 33rd consecutive year.”
“When market conditions deteriorated, we swiftly reduced capital spending by 35 percent from 2019 and also reduced operating costs, demonstrating our commitment to capital and cost discipline,” Wirth added. Excluding severance expense, 2020 operating expenses were down
$1.4 billion from the prior year. Chevron also completed an enterprise-wide transformation program and the integration of Noble Energy, positioning the company for the future.
“The acquisition of Noble Energy was completed in October, adding high-quality assets, opportunities and people to Chevron,” Wirth said. The company also generated asset sales proceeds of $2.9 billion in 2020, including the sale of its Appalachia natural gas business in December. For 2018 through 2020, the company generated asset sales proceeds of $7.7 billion, in the middle of its guidance range of $5-$10 billion.
Chevron added 832 million barrels of net oil-equivalent proved reserves in 2020. These additions, which are subject to final reviews, are net of reductions associated with lower commodity prices, decisions to reduce capital funding for various projects and asset sales.
The largest net additions were from the acquisition of Noble Energy and from assets in Kazakhstan. The largest net reductions were from assets in Australia, Venezuela, and the Permian Basin and asset sales in Appalachia. The company will provide additional details relating to 2020 reserve additions in its Annual Report on Form 10-K scheduled for filing with the SEC on February 25, 2021.
“In 2020, we increased production of renewable products and investments in low-carbon technologies, consistent with our commitment to succeed in a lower carbon future,” Wirth stated.
During the year, the company announced first gas production at its CalBioGas renewable natural gas (RNG) joint venture in California, formed a new RNG partnership with Brightmark and announced first production of renewable base oil through its Novvi joint venture. The company also entered agreements to invest in carbon capture and other emerging low carbon technologies through its Future Energy Fund.
At year-end, balances of cash, cash equivalents, and marketable securities totaled $5.6 billion, a decrease of $0.1 billion from the end of 2019. Total debt at December 31, 2020 was $44.3 billion, an increase of $17.3 billion from a year earlier, including $9.4 billion from Noble Energy.
Worldwide net oil-equivalent production was 3.28 million barrels per day in fourth quarter 2020, an increase of 6 percent from a year ago. The increase was largely due to the Noble Energy acquisition, partially offset by production curtailments.
Worldwide net oil-equivalent production for the full-year 2020 was 3.08 million barrels per day, an increase of 1 percent from the prior year.
U.S. upstream operations earned $101 million in fourth quarter 2020, compared with a loss of $7.47 billion a year earlier. The increase was primarily due to the absence of fourth quarter 2019 impairments of $8.2 billion, partially offset by lower crude oil realizations.
The company’s average sales price per barrel of crude oil and natural gas liquids was $33 in fourth quarter 2020, down from $47 a year earlier. The average sales price of natural gas was $1.49 per thousand cubic feet in fourth quarter 2020, up from $1.10 in last year’s fourth quarter.
Net oil-equivalent production of 1.20 million barrels per day in fourth quarter 2020 was up 197,000 barrels per day from a year earlier. The increase was due to 231,000 barrels per day of
production from the Noble Energy acquisition. Additional production increases from shale and tight properties in the Permian Basin were more than offset by normal field declines, weather effects in the Gulf of Mexico and a 25,000 barrels per day decrease related to the Appalachian asset sale.
The net liquids component of oil-equivalent production in fourth quarter 2020 increased 14 percent to 880,000 barrels per day, while net natural gas production increased 39 percent to 1.89 billion cubic feet per day, compared to last year’s fourth quarter.
International upstream operations earned $400 million in fourth quarter 2020, compared with $731 million a year ago. The decrease in earnings was primarily due to the absence of a 2019 gain of $1.2 billion on the sale of the U.K. Central North Sea assets, lower crude oil and natural gas realizations and lower crude oil sales volumes.
Partially offsetting the decrease was the absence of fourth quarter 2019 write-offs and impairment charges of $2.2 billion along with lower operating expenses. Foreign currency effects had an unfavorable impact on earnings of $158 million between periods.
The average sales price for crude oil and natural gas liquids in fourth quarter 2020 was $40 per barrel, down from $57 a year earlier. The average sales price of natural gas was $4.23 per thousand cubic feet in the fourth quarter, compared with $5.71 in last year’s fourth quarter.
Net oil-equivalent production of 2.08 million barrels per day in fourth quarter 2020 was flat relative to fourth quarter 2019. Higher production due to 124,000 barrels per day of production from the Noble Energy acquisition and favorable entitlement effects were offset by production curtailments associated with OPEC+ restrictions and market conditions, asset sale-related decreases of 82,000 barrels per day and normal field declines.
The net liquids component of oil- equivalent production decreased 2 percent to 1.10 million barrels per day in fourth quarter 2020, while net natural gas production of 5.90 billion cubic feet per day increased 3 percent, compared to last year’s fourth quarter.
U.S. downstream operations reported a loss of $174 million in fourth quarter 2020, compared with earnings of $488 million a year earlier. The decrease was mainly due to lower margins on refined product sales and lower sales volumes, partially offset by lower operating expenses and higher earnings from 50 percent-owned Chevron Phillips Chemical Company LLC.
Refinery crude oil input in fourth quarter 2020 decreased 17 percent to 806,000 barrels per day from the year-ago period, as the company cut refinery runs in response to the weak refining margin environment.
Refined product sales of 1.02 million barrels per day were also down 17 percent from fourth quarter 2019, mainly due to lower jet fuel, diesel and gasoline demand associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.
International downstream operations reported a loss of $164 million in fourth quarter 2020, compared with earnings of $184 million a year earlier. The decrease in earnings was largely due to lower margins on refined product sales, partially offset by lower operating expenses. Foreign currency effects had an unfavorable impact on earnings of $108 million between periods.
Refinery crude oil input of 541,000 barrels per day in fourth quarter 2020 decreased 6 percent from the year-ago period, primarily due to the economic slowdowns in response to the COVID- 19 pandemic, partially offset by the absence of the fourth quarter 2019 major planned turnaround at the Star Petroleum Refining Company in Thailand.
Refined product sales of 1.23 million barrels per day in fourth quarter 2020 were down 4 percent from the year-ago period, mainly due to lower jet fuel demand associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, partially offset by higher diesel sales resulting from the second quarter 2020 acquisition of Puma Energy (Australia) Holdings Pty Ltd.
All Other consists of worldwide cash management and debt financing activities, corporate administrative functions, insurance operations, real estate activities and technology companies.
Net charges in fourth quarter 2020 were $828 million, compared to $548 million a year earlier. The increase in net charges between periods was mainly due to higher pension expenses and Noble Energy acquisition costs, partially offset by favorable tax items. Foreign currency effects increased net charges by $12 million between periods.
CASH FLOW FROM OPERATIONS
Cash flow from operations in 2020 was $10.6 billion, compared with $27.3 billion in 2019. Excluding working capital effects, cash flow from operations in 2020 was $12.2 billion, compared with $25.8 billion in 2019.
CAPITAL AND EXPLORATORY EXPENDITURES
Capital and exploratory expenditures in 2020 were $13.5 billion, compared with $21.0 billion in 2019. The amounts included $4.0 billion in 2020 and $6.1 billion in 2019 for the company’s share of expenditures by affiliates, which did not require cash outlays by the company.
Expenditures for upstream represented 81 percent of the company-wide total in 2020. Included in 2020 were inorganic capital expenditures of $350 million primarily associated with the downstream acquisition of Puma Energy (Australia) Holdings Pty Ltd. The acquisition of Noble Energy is not included in the company’s capital and exploratory expenditures.