The Saudi Arabian oil giant Aramco reported more than an 80% jump in net profit on Sunday setting a new quarterly earnings record for the company.
The oil producing behemoth said that its net income rose 82% to $39.5 billion in the first three months of 2022. CNBC reported that this is up from $21.7 billion over the same period in 2021.
The company’s income to date obliterates forecasts by economic experts, as well. Analysts polled by Reuters forecast Aramco’s income to be $38.5 billion.
The record quarter income for Aramco comes as companies throughout the oil industry are experiencing windfall profits from sharp rises in oil and gas prices. Aramco said that its earnings were largely driven by higher crude oil prices which in turn caused increasing volumes of product to be sold as downstream margins improved.
In the Sunday earnings release, Aramco President and CEO Amin Nasser said, “During the first quarter, our strategic downstream expansion progressed further in both Asia and Europe, and we continue to develop opportunities that complement our growth objectives. Against the backdrop of increased volatility in global markets, we remain focused on helping meet the world’s demand for energy that is reliable, affordable and increasingly sustainable.”
Now with a market cap around $2.43 trillion, Aramco has surpassed Apple to become the world’s most valuable company in the world.
Aramco’s stock is up more than 15% so far in 2022 amid widespread market selloffs. In March, the oil giant reported that its full-year profits from 2021 more than doubled due to the ongoing rise in global oil prices that has now been greatly exasperated by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
As member states in the European Union and the United States look for alternatives to Russian oil Aramco has the opportunity to corner the Western oil market.
In early May, the European Union planned on moving forward with issuing additional sanctions against Russia. In order for the European Union to implement sanctions, all of its 27 member states must agree to enforce them in their respective nations.
An embargo of Russian oil by the European Union would dramatically increase tensions between the European Union’s member states and Russia as the member nations would subsequently isolate the nation from which they import almost two-thirds of their oil.
Ultimately, the European Union member states failed to reach a unanimous consensus on banning the import of Russian oil. Hungary was the sole dissenter.