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Chevron Says It Expects Earnings to Be 'Notably Higher'

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Chevron, the second-largest U.S. oil company, said on Thursday its fourth-quarter profit would be "notably higher" than the previous quarter as oil and gas output bounced back and it booked a $1.4 billion gain on an asset transaction.

The average U.S. production of oil and gas from wells rose to 676,000 barrels per day in October and November, compared with a hurricane-depressed average of 637,000 bpd for the third quarter, the company said in its quarterly interim update.

Worldwide, Chevron produced the oil equivalent of 2.66 million bpd in the first two months of the quarter, up from an average 2.52 million in the third quarter - when production was reduced by maintenance in the UK and Kazakhstan.

Before the interim update, analysts had expected a net profit of $3.00 per share for the fourth quarter, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S, up from $2.57 in the third quarter and $2.58 in the fourth quarter a year before.

Chevron got no help from oil prices in the quarter, with an average Brent oil price of $110 per barrel, basically the same as the previous quarter and up just $1 per barrel from a year before.

The $1.4 billion gain stemmed from a deal with Royal Dutch Shell, announced in August, in which Shell swapped interests in two fields off Australia for Chevron's holdings in the Browse liquefied natural gas project.

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