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    Chevron Interim Report Shows Earnings Gain

    Hurricane damages reduced refinery production.

    SAN RAMON, Calif. -- Despite a volatile economy and record low fuel consumption rates, Chevron Corp. reported in an interim note it expects third-quarter earnings to top income from the previous quarter.

    The increase is attributed July’s record-high crude prices and rebounding and lower refinery production rates, The Los Angles Times reported. The nation’s second-largest oil company, which earned $5.98 billion for the second quarter, will announce its third-quarter results Oct. 31.

    Chevron’s interim report underscored lessened operations, noting oil and natural gas production fell to the equivalent of 2.46 million barrels a day, which is down 3 percent compared to the second quarter.

    Hurricanes Gustav and Ike caused production to fall by 150,000 barrels a day in September. Due to damages, Chevron estimated about 5,000 barrels a day in its Gulf of Mexico production would be lost indefinitely.

    In addition, Chevron will take a $400 million charge against earnings to cover hurricane-related repairs and the cost of abandoning toppled platforms too damaged for restoration, according to the report. However, a gain of $350 million from the sale of certain assets and ownership stakes is estimated to offset the majority of those costs.

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