Petrobras Reports Modest Output Growth

(Reuters, Ana Mano and Gram Slattery, 26.Jul.2019) — Brazilian state-run oil firm Petroleo Brasileiro SA posted a modest production boost in the second quarter, but failed to live up to market expectations, sending shares down over 2% in morning trade.

In an early Friday securities filing, Petrobras, as the firm is known, said total second-quarter oil and gas production hit 2.633 million barrels per day of oil equivalent (boe), up 3.8% from the previous quarter.

Despite the increase, the market expected more of the company, which is dramatically ramping up production in Brazil’s offshore ‘pre-salt’ area. Last quarter, executives predicted a strong boost in output and maintained guidance of 2.8 billion boe for full-year 2019.

The 2.633 million boe figure was only slightly higher than the April monthly figure, when Petrobras produced 2.61 million boe. Also on Friday, the firm cut 2019 full-year forecast to 2.7 million boe.

Petrobras said the rise was driven by the ramp-up of pre-salt platforms that entered into operation last year and earlier this year in the Búzios and Lula fields.

However, it was hit by falling production in its so-called post-salt areas, as well as at its onshore and shallow-water fields.

Brazil-listed preferred shares in Petrobras were off 1.9% in early morning trade, paring losses slightly after falling over 2.5% at opening.

(Reporting by Ana Mano and Gram Slattery Editing by Edmund Blair and Nick Zieminski)

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