Exxon said net income rose to $8.78 billion, or $2.05 per share, from $6.86 billion, or $1.55 per share, a year earlier.
Analysts on average expected earnings of $1.86 per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Part of the increase in profit was due to a gain from Exxon's sale of its 60 percent stake in a Hong Kong utility and power storage firm earlier this year.
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Unlike others on Wall Street, Exxon does not typically offer an "adjusted" earnings number. Youngberg said that if the company had backed out the gain from the Hong Kong sale, its profit would have missed expectations.
Production fell 6 percent to 3.8 million barrels of oil equivalent per day. While the drop is not a positive, investors should not see it as the beginning of a negative trend, said Oliver Pursche of Gary Goldberg Financial Services, who manages Exxon shares for clients.
"The bigger question beyond production is what their future exploration looks like," he said. "And I would say there's certainly opportunity there for them to make up for this dip in production with fresh reserves."
The average price that Exxon receives for its crude oil jumped 3 percent in the United States and 5 percent internationally during the quarter.
Exxon's shares fell 1.7 percent to $101.52 in early trading. At Wednesday's close, the stock had gained about 2 percent so far this year. (Click here to track its shares.)