Husky Energy beats profit estimates; resumes dividend payments

FILE PHOTO: Banners for the Canadian company Husky Energy are seen at a sporting event in Lake Louise, Alberta December 1, 2009. REUTERS/Andy Clark/File Photo

(Reuters) - Canadian oil and gas producer Husky Energy Inc HSE.TO posted a higher-than-expected quarterly profit on Thursday and resumed dividend payments after more than two years as it benefits from rising oil prices.

Husky said it would pay a C$0.075 per share dividend for the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31. The company scrapped dividends in 2016 as a response to falling oil prices amid a global glut.

An OPEC-led supply limit deal struck that year has helped oil prices improve. Average realized prices for Husky’s upstream business jumped 17 percent to C$46.69 per barrel of oil equivalent in the reported quarter.

Husky has also been investing in its offshore business in Newfoundland and Labrador in Canada to protect itself from falling prices in oil-rich Alberta due to pipeline problems.

Upstream production came in at 320,400 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boe/d) compared with 327,000 boe/d a year earlier, which included 20,200 boe/d in assets that Husky has since sold.

Net earnings rose to C$672 million ($523 million) in the three months ended Dec. 31, from C$186 million a year earlier.

Excluding items, Husky earned 23 Canadian cents per share, beating analysts’ average estimate by 3 Canadian cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Reporting by Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru; Editing by Sai Sachin Ravikumar and Saumyadeb Chakrabarty