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Dow Jones Newswires: Shell earnings fall 18% as it kicks off $4 billion buyback

Shell PLC
SHEL,
+4.31%

on Thursday reported third-quarter earnings that fell 18% on quarter, citing lower trading and margins and higher expenses, and kicked off a $4 billion share-buyback program.

The energy giant posted adjusted earnings of $9.45 billion for the period, down from $11.47 billion in the second quarter but beating market expectations of $9.0 billion, provided by Vara Research and averaged from 27 analysts’ estimates. Last year it posted third quarter adjusted earnings of $4.13 billion.

Shell said the on-quarter earnings decline reflected lower liquid natural gas trading and optimization results, lower chemicals and refining margins, higher underlying operating expenses and losses from fair value accounting and impairment charges.

Adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization came in at $21.51 billion, down from $23.15 billion in the second quarter and above market expectations of $20.72 billion, provided by Vara and based on 21 analysts’ estimates.

Net income was $6.74 billion compared with $18.04 billion in the second quarter.

Shell declared a quarterly dividend of $0.25 a share, in line with the second quarter.

The company also said it will hold a share buyback program, to reduce its share capital. All shares repurchased across both the London and Netherlands exchanges will be cancelled. The program is expected to complete within three months.

Write to Joe Hoppe at joseph.hoppe@wsj.com

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