ExxonMobil's Q2 profit soars on one-time gain

US energy giant ExxonMobil posted strong profit gains for the second quarter Thursday, boosted by a one-time gain and drops in capital and exploration spending and divestments.

Net income was $15.9 billion in the April-June period, an increase of 48.6 percent from a year ago, lifted by $7.5 billion in gains related to divestments and tax-related items, including the reduction of its stake in Japanese firm TonenGeneral Sekiyu.

Exxon Mobil Corporation reported earnings of $3.41 per share, up 56 percent from the second quarter of 2011.

Excluding the one-time gains, EPS was roughly $1.80, well below Wall Street's $1.95 estimate.

Shares in the blue-chip Dow member were up 0.6 percent in morning trade amid a sharp market rally that pushed the Dow Jones Industrial Average up by more than one percent.

Total revenues rose 1.5 percent, to $127.4 billion, widely topping expectations of $115.1 billion.

Oil-equivalent production fell 5.6 percent; excluding certain impacts, production was essentially flat, the oil and natural gas giant said.

ExxonMobil chairman Rex Tillerson said the results reflected the company's long-range investment strategy amid challenging economic conditions.

"Despite global economic uncertainty, we continue to invest throughout the business cycle taking a long-term view of resource development," Tillerson said in a statement.

Capital and exploration spending totaled $9.3 billion in the second quarter, down 9.0 percent from the same period in 2011.

For the first six months of the year, ExxonMobil said it had spent a record $18.2 billion.

Tillerson said that ExxonMobil is making progress on plans to invest roughly $37 billion per year over the next five years to help meet the global demand for energy.

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