Schlumberger Ltd. shares rose 2% in premarket trade Friday, after the energy giant posted better-than-expected earnings for the first quarter. The company had net income of $299 million, or 21 cents a share, in the quarter, down from $374 million, or 27 cents a share, in the year-earlier period. Revenue fell to $5.223 billion from $5.532 billion. The FactSet consensus was for EPS of 19 cents and revenue of $5.089 billion. Revenue was reduced by the divestiture of certain North America businesses in the fourth quarter of 2020, which generated $285 million in revenue in the fourth quarter of 2020 and $659 million in the first quarter of 2020. Excluding those divestitures, revenue was flat sequentially and down 23% year-on-year. “Looking ahead, we continue to be encouraged by constructive macroeconomic drivers. While the world is still grappling with COVID-19 infection rates, vaccination programs and fiscal stimulus packages are expected to support a rebound of economic activity and oil demand recovery through the year,” Chief Executive Olivier Le Peuch said in a statement. Shares have gained 16% in the year to date, while the S&P 500 has gained 10%.
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