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Mobil Earnings Post 4 Percent Rise

January 28, 1998

FAIRFAX, Va. (AP) _ Mobil Corp. posted a 4 percent rise in fourth-quarter profits Wednesday, but falling prices and restructuring costs related to European and Australian operations dampened its performance.

Mobil earned $704 million, or 86 cents per diluted share, in the final three months of 1997, up from $676 million, or 82 cents per diluted share, in the same period a year ago.

The second-largest U.S. oil company said operating profits fell 8 percent to $809 million, or $1.01 a share from $879 million, or $1.10 a share, a year ago.

Revenue fell 28 percent to $16.3 billion from $23 billion in fourth-quarter 1996 as Mobil was hurt by falling oil prices. The drop in prices was partially offset by increased production volume.

The results included special charges of $105 million, primarily due to restructuring of the oil company’s alliance with British Petroleum in Europe. A new restructuring of marketing operations in Australia also contributed, Mobil said.

For all of 1997, Fairfax-based Mobil reported earnings up 10 percent to $3.2 billion, or $4.00 per diluted share, up from, $2.9 billion or $23.61 per diluted share, a year ago.

Revenues fell for the year from $81.5 billion in 1996 to $65.7 billion last year.

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