Oil companies will tell you that they're jacking up prices because of tightening supplies. But when it comes time to announce quarterly earnings, they can't stop themselves from revealing the truth and boasting about the billions in profits they're raking in:
Exxon Mobil Corp., the world's largest publicly traded oil company, reported a 32 percent increase in second-quarter profits as it reaped the benefits of soaring oil and natural gas prices.
The strong second quarter enabled Exxon Mobil to produce a record $15.5 billion in net income, or $2.42 per share, for the first six months. That 38 percent boost is up $4.2 billion, or $1.71 a share, from the first six months of 2004.
Not only has it surpassed last year's two-quarter mark. Exxon is just $1.5 billion off its three-quarter performance from last year. If Exxon continues at this pace, it could record more than $30 billion in net income; last year it netted $25.3 billion.
"They made a lot of money last year, but now they are printing it," [analyst Fadel] Gheit said.