By Kimberly Chin

 

Williams Cos. reported lower profit and revenue in the fiscal second quarter as geopolitical tensions and the Covid-19 pandemic roiled the energy industry.

However, the company said it continues to see demand for natural gas. "Even with the significant and unexpected disruptions caused by geopolitical oil disputes, the COVID-19 pandemic and a tropical storm, our earnings remained consistent with our projections, largely due to the stability of our natural gas-focused business, our minimal exposure to commodity price volatility, and our proactive cost reductions instituted last year," said Chief Executive Alan Armstrong in prepared remarks.

The oil and natural gas pipeline operator said profit was $303 million, or 25 cents a share, down from $310 million, or 26 cents a share, in the comparable period last year. Excluding non-cash impairment charges, adjusted earnings were also 25 cents a share. Analysts were expecting 24 cents an adjusted share, according to a FactSet poll.

Total costs and expenses fell 24% to $1.17 billion, largely due to lower operating and administrative expenses, including employee costs.

It also had higher equity earnings from its Northeast gathering and processing (G&P) investments, the company said.

Total revenue fell to $1.78 billion from $2.04 billion a year earlier, mainly due to lower deferred revenue at its Gulfstar One and Barnett projects, as well as the termination of its Barnett minimum-volume commitments last year. Analysts projected revenue of $1.79 billion.

 

Write to Kimberly Chin at kimberly.chin@wsj.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

August 03, 2020 17:36 ET (21:36 GMT)

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