Canadian Natural Resources blames higher tax rate for $405M net loss

File: Canadian Natural Resources logo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO

CALGARY – Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. (TSX:CNQ) had a $405-million net loss in the second quarter but the company says it would have been profitable without a 20 per cent increase in Alberta’s corporate tax rate.

The Calgary-based oil and gas producer says the higher tax rate – which rose to 12 per cent as of July 1 – increased Canadian Natural’s deferred income tax liability by $579 million.

Excluding that item, Canadian Natural says it had $178 million of adjusted earnings from operations.

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The results were weak compared with the same period last year, when Canadian Natural had $1.07 billion of net earnings and $1.15 billion of adjusted net earnings.

Canadian Natural’s revenue fell 36 per cent or nearly $2 billion compared with the second quarter of 2014, when global oil and gas prices were much higher.

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It says total revenue the second quarter was $3.42 billion, down from $5.37 billion a year earlier.

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