Equinor, the Norwegian energy major, has unveiled a new share buyback program following the release of its fourth-quarter earnings, which surpassed expectations. Despite lower gas prices, Equinor's higher oil production helped to counteract the decrease, resulting in a positive financial performance.
Renewable Power Production
Equinor has set an ambitious target to double its annual power production from renewable sources this year. The company is confident in its ability to achieve profitable growth due to several factors: stronger cash flow, a wider energy offering, and a commitment to lower emissions by 2035.
Chief Executive Anders Opedal highlighted the company's long-term strategy, stating that they expect stable contributions from oil and gas until 2035. Furthermore, Equinor anticipates significant and rapid cash flow growth from their renewables and low carbon business by 2030.
Strong Financial Results
Equinor reported adjusted earnings of $8.68 billion for the fourth quarter, surpassing the company's own forecast and market expectations. This figure marks a decline from the previous year's earnings of $17.01 billion but outperformed the anticipated $8.46 billion.
The company recorded a net profit of $2.6 billion for the quarter, compared to $7.9 billion in the same period last year. Equinor also exceeded the estimated net profit of $2.46 billion from a FactSet poll.
However, Equinor's revenue experienced a 15% decline, amounting to $28.84 billion.
Equinor projects stable oil and gas production from 2023 onwards and plans for organic capital expenditure of approximately $13 billion. As part of its capital distribution plan, Equinor has proposed a quarterly dividend of $0.35 and an extraordinary dividend of $0.35. Additionally, the company has announced a two-year share buyback program worth $10 billion-$12 billion, with $6 billion targeted for 2024.
Overall, Equinor's capital distribution in 2024 is expected to reach $14 billion.