Diamondback Posts Higher Earnings, Raises Dividend on Soaring Rough Prices


Feb 22 (Reuters) – U.S. shale oil producer Diamondback Energy Inc (FANG.O) reported stronger-than-expected fourth-quarter profit on Tuesday and raised its dividend to shareholders as fuel prices soared multi-annual due to higher energy demand.

Global crude prices jumped more than 50% last year, rebounding from a pandemic-induced drop in demand. They averaged $80 a barrel in the last three months of 2021, nearly double the previous year.

Diamondback said it would raise its annual dividend by 20% to $2.40 a share, reflecting moves by rivals to boost shareholder returns as oil profits soar.

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The shares rose 1.4% to $129.80 after hours trading after closing down more than 2%.

Diamondback said its average unhedged prices realized during the fourth quarter more than doubled to $56.47 per barrel of oil equivalent.

Its production in the fourth quarter was 387,100 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boepd), compared to 299,000 last year.

The Midland, Texas-based company expects production between 369,000 and 376,000 boepd in the first quarter. This represents an increase from approximately 307,400 boepd in the first quarter of 2021.

Diamondback also said Tuesday that Steven West will be stepping down as chairman but will remain on its board. Chief Executive Travis Stice will add chairman duties, the company said.

Diamondback’s adjusted revenue jumped to $657 million, or $3.63 per share, in the quarter from $130 million, or 82 cents per share, a year earlier. Wall Street analysts had expected earnings of $3.38 per share, according to Refinitiv IBES.

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Reporting by Ruhi Soni in Bengaluru and Liz Hampton in Denver, Colorado; Editing by Maju Samuel and Bill Berkrot

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