Saudi state oil giant Aramco recorded free cash flow of $45 billion this quarter Image Credit: AFP

Riyadh: Saudi Arabian state oil producer Aramco said on Tuesday its third-quarter net income rose 39 per cent, boosted by higher crude oil prices and volumes sold, beating analysts' forecasts. Aramco's net income rose to $42.4 billion for the quarter to September 30 from $30.4 billion a year earlier, it said in a bourse filing.

That was just above the median net profit forecast of $41.7 billion from 16 analysts.

While the third quarter's profits are lower than the record profit of $48 billion between April and June, the almost 40 per cent increase year-on-year (YoY) has been attributed to being driven by 'higher crude oil prices and volumes sold'.

Dividends stay the same

Free cash flow, the company added, increased to $45.0 billion from $28.7 billion in the third quarter last year. However, dividends have been kept the same, at $18.8 billion, which will be paid in the fourth quarter.

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The dividend payout remains the world's largest to date. Aramco pumps around 11 million barrels of crude each day and its valued at $2.09 trillion

Possible IPO

A Bloomberg report in October said the world’s largest oil company is working with its advisers for a listing in Riyadh for the end of the year or early 2023, citing unidentified sources. Aramco is in the process of adding more banks to the IPO, which could value the unit at more than $30 billion, the sources reportedly said.

Oil prices have declined from 14-year highs March as rising inflation and monetary tightening from central banks slow the global economy. Yet Brent futures have still gained more than 20 per cent this year and are trading around $93.50 a barrel.

"While global crude oil prices during this period were affected by continued economic uncertainty, our longterm view is that oil demand will continue to grow for the rest of the decade," Chief Executive Officer Amin Nasser said in a statement.

- Inputs from agencies