Imperial Oil reports first quarter profit down from year ago, raises dividend

A flare stack lights the sky from the Imperial Oil refinery in Edmonton on December 28, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson.

Imperial Oil Ltd. raised its dividend nearly 16 per cent as it reported that its first-quarter profit fell compared with a year ago.

The Calgary-based energy company says it will now pay a quarterly dividend of 22 cents per share, up from 19 cents.

READ MORE: Crude-by-rail exports fall in January as Alberta started production cuts

The increased payment to shareholders came as Imperial reported a profit of $293 million or 38 cents per diluted share for its first quarter.

That compared with a profit of $516 million or 62 cents per share in the same quarter last year.

READ MORE: Crude by rail volumes fall as Calgary-based Imperial Oil cuts Alberta shipments

Rich Kruger, Imperial’s chairman and chief executive, says Alberta’s mandatory production curtailment order significantly affected the company’s financial performance.

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Kruger says improved upstream realizations were more than offset by reduced downstream margins.

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