Exxon Mobil's profits fell dramatically in the third quarter as the company was hurt by lower prices for crude oil and natural gas, the AP reports. The Texas oil giant reported $3.17 billion in profits in the third quarter Friday, down 49% from the same time last year. Total revenue was $65.05 billion, down 15% from the same time last year. Oil prices have suffered due to a prolonged trade war between the US and China, which has raised concerns about a global economic slowdown. Natural gas prices have also been low as a glut of the fuel in the US floods the market.
Despite falling prices, Exxon's oil production rose 3% to 3.9 million barrels per day, driven primarily by growth in the Permian Basin. Production in the Permian was up 72% compared with the same time last year, the company said. "We feel really good about the volume growth that we see out there," said Neil Hansen, vice president of investor relations, on a conference call with investors. "The resource continues to respond very well." Outside the US, Exxon had five significant deep-water discoveries in Guyana and Cyprus during the quarter. (Meanwhile, the Keystone pipeline had its second big spill in two years.)