Hungarian fuels group Mol is to publish its earnings report for the fourth quarter of 2015 on 24 February and investors are awaiting it more anxiously than before considering the current oil price environment. Analysts polled by Portfolio expect Mol’s clean consolidated EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation) was around the base period’s level, as a result of Refining & Marketing that probably offset a major contraction in Exploration Production results. The after-tax profit, however, is expected to show a massive loss of over HUF 200 bn, mostly over write-downs.
Mol is to publish its Q415 earnings report on 24 February, and investors are likely awaiting the figures with keener eyes this time because of the continued fall in oil prices this year. The consensus forecast of analysts in a Portfolio poll shows Clean CCS EBITDA, an indicator most closely watched in the industry, was largely at the same level as in the base period.
This could have happened because the 40% contraction expected in Downstream was fully compensated by improving R&M results.
The reported figures may, of course, be totally different from this and they probably will be, as Mol specifically said that there will be write-downs in the quarter. The consensus estimate shows HUF 240 bn after-tax loss for Q4, which would be an exceptionally bad quarter.
The key question is at which assets Mol had write-downs and to what amount, and it is also important what strategic objectives and priorities it will have regarding the future of the remaining assets and their use.