Saudi Aramco profit soars on higher prices and refining margins

State oil giant Saudi Aramco reported a soaring 90% rise in second-quarter profit on Sunday, beating analyst expectations and propelled by higher oil prices, volumes sold and refining margins, Reuters reports.

The company expects “oil demand to continue to grow for the rest of the decade, despite downward economic pressures on short-term global forecasts,” Aramco chief executive Amin Nasser said in the earnings report.

Aramco’s net profit rose to 181.64 billion riyals ($48.39 billion) for the quarter to June 30 from 95.47 billion riyals a year earlier.

Analysts had expected a net profit of $46.2 billion, according to the mean estimate from 15 analysts.

It declared a dividend of $18.8 billion in the second quarter, in line with its own target, which will be paid in the third quarter.

Aramco shares have risen over 25% this year as oil and natural gas prices have scaled multi-year highs after Western sanctions against major exporter Russia squeezed an already under-supplied global market.

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