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story.lead_photo.caption Graphs showing Murphy Oil third quarter information.

Murphy Oil Corp. reported robust third-quarter earnings Thursday, beating analysts' expectations with net income of $1.1 billion, well above the $94 million reported in the same quarter in 2018.

The El Dorado company reported earnings per share of $6.76, compared with 54 cents a year ago.

Profits were fueled by a $2 billion asset sale in Malaysia and improved operations in the Gulf of Mexico. Murphy completed the Malaysia asset divestiture in July.

In the quarter, revenue was $817.1 million, up from $490.5 million last year. Adjusted net income, which excludes discontinued operations and other one-time items, was $57 million, or 36 cents per diluted share.

"Our company is performing exceptionally well," President and Chief Executive Officer Roger Jenkins said in a statement. Jenkins noted that the company is a "transformed and streamlined Murphy" now that the Malaysian sale is completed.

Murphy had about $2 billion of liquidity at the end of the quarter and the company is positioned to deliver long-term value to shareholders, Jenkins said.

"Murphy has meaningfully de-levered its balance sheet and improved liquidity this quarter with cash from the Malaysia asset sale as part of ongoing portfolio transformation," he said. "As promised, we consistently return cash through our substantial dividend and reliably delivered on our share repurchase program ahead of schedule, supporting Murphy's tenet of benefiting our shareholders."

The company's stock increased $1.12, or 5.7%, to close Thursday at $20.63.

Murphy also announced a $1.9 billion debt repayment and the repurchase of $500 million in shares in its stock buyback program.

The company increased production in its Eagle Ford shale development in Texas by 15% over the previous quarter and reported its highest oil volumes since the first quarter of 2015.

Murphy Oil is an independent exploration and production company that operates global offshore and onshore assets. The company produces oil and natural gas in the United States and Canada and conducts exploration across the globe.

Business on 11/01/2019

Print Headline: Murphy Oil's 3Q earnings at $1.1B

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