July 30 (Reuters) – Exxon Mobil (XOM.N) on Friday posted its biggest quarterly profit in more than a year that also sailed past analysts’ estimates, boosted by higher oil prices and record earnings at its chemicals business.
The upbeat results following a contested board fight over the company’s direction highlighted how oil producers are taking advantage of a recovery in oil prices to cut debt and boost shareholder payouts rather than spend more to raise production.
“Positive momentum continued during the second quarter across all of our businesses as the global economic recovery increased demand for our products,” Chief Executive Darren Woods said.
Exxon said its 2021 capital spending is expected to be at the lower end of the prior range of $16 billion to $19 billion.
Earlier in the day, rival Chevron cut its 2021 budget, although both U.S. producers expect higher spending in the second half of the year as they resume investments on key projects,…