Suncor Energy Reports Second Quarter 2022 Results

Source Press Release
Company Suncor Energy Inc.Sval Energi AS 
Tags Corporate Deals, Deals, Oil Sands, Unconventional Resources, Production/Development, Exploration, Upstream Activities, Capital Spending, Government Policy, Financial & Operating Data, Strategy - Corporate
Date August 04, 2022

"Driven by a strong business environment, Suncor (TSX: SU) (NYSE: SU) generated record adjusted funds from operations of approximately $5.3 billion, or $3.80 per common share, in the second quarter of 2022, as we executed planned maintenance across our asset base," said Kris Smith, interim president and chief executive officer. "Our confidence in our business and expected annual cash flows enabled us to return approximately $3.2 billion of value to our shareholders, which includes both the highest dividend per share and highest rate of share repurchases in the company's history."

  • Adjusted funds from operations increased to $5.345 billion ($3.80 per common share) in the second quarter of 2022, compared to $2.362 billion ($1.57 per common share) in the prior year quarter. This was the highest in the company's history, exceeding the prior per share quarterly record, from the first quarter of 2022, by 33%. Cash flow provided by operating activities, which includes changes in non-cash working capital, was $4.235 billion ($3.01 per common share) in the second quarter of 2022, compared to $2.086 billion ($1.39 per common share) in the prior year quarter.

  • Adjusted operating earnings increased to $3.814 billion ($2.71 per common share) in the second quarter of 2022, compared to $722 million ($0.48 per common share) in the prior year quarter. The company's net earnings increased to $3.996 billion ($2.84 per common share) in the second quarter of 2022, compared to $868 million ($0.58 per common share) in the prior year quarter.

  • For the second consecutive quarter, Oil Sands delivered record adjusted funds from operations(1) of $4.231 billion in the second quarter of 2022, compared to $1.844 billion in the prior year quarter, driven by significantly higher price realizations. Production from the company's Oil Sands assets increased to 641,500 barrels per day (bbls/d) in the second quarter of 2022, compared to 615,700 bbls/d in the prior year quarter, due to increased production at Syncrude and Fort Hills in the current period, partially offset by the impact of maintenance activities at Oil Sands operations, including the largest turnaround in Firebag history, which was completed subsequent to the quarter.

  • Refining and Marketing (R&M) generated record adjusted funds from operations(1) of $2.127 billion in the second quarter of 2022, compared to $677 million in the prior year quarter. In the second quarter, refinery utilization averaged 84% and crude throughput was 389,300 bbls/d, compared to 70% and 325,300 bbls/d respectively in the prior year quarter. Solid utilizations in the current quarter outside of planned turnaround activities allowed the company to capture significant benchmark crack spreads and refining margins. Following the completion of planned turnaround activities, the company's refineries exited the quarter with an average refinery utilization of over 100%.

  • In the second quarter of 2022, Suncor continued to deliver on its strategy of growing shareholder returns, returning record value to its shareholders of approximately $3.2 billion, through approximately $2.6 billion in share repurchases and the payment of $657 million of dividends. Both the dividend per common share and the rate of common share repurchases during the quarter are the highest in the company's history. As at August 2, 2022, since the start of the year, the company has repurchased approximately $3.9 billion of Suncor's common shares, representing approximately 88.5 million common shares at an average share price of $44.40 per common share, or the equivalent of 6.1% of its common shares as at December 31, 2021.

  • In the second quarter of 2022, the company completed an early redemption of its outstanding US$450 million 2.80% notes and US$550 million 3.10% notes originally due in 2023 and 2025, respectively. The company expects to achieve the lower end of its 2025 targeted net debt range during the second half of 2022.

  • In the second quarter of 2022, Suncor and the joint venture owners announced the decision to restart the West White Rose Project offshore the east coast of Canada, which is expected to extend the production life of the White Rose field, providing long-term value for the company.

  • Subsequent to the second quarter of 2022, the company reached an agreement for the sale of its Exploration and Production (E&P) assets in Norway, pending regulatory approval, for gross proceeds of approximately $410 million (Canadian dollar equivalent), before closing adjustments and other closing costs. The sale is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2022, with an effective date of March 1, 2022.

Financial Results

Adjusted Operating Earnings

Suncor's adjusted operating earnings increased to $3.814 billion ($2.71 per common share) in the second quarter of 2022, compared to $722 million ($0.48 per common share) in the prior year quarter, primarily due to significantly higher crude oil and refined product realizations reflecting the improved business environment in the current quarter, combined with higher upstream production and refinery throughput. The increase in adjusted operating earnings was partially offset by an increase in royalties and income taxes and increased operating expenses primarily related to a significant increase in commodity input costs in the current quarter compared to the prior year quarter.

Net Earnings

Suncor's net earnings increased to $3.996 billion ($2.84 per common share) in the second quarter of 2022, compared to $868 million ($0.58 per common share) in the prior year quarter. In addition to the factors impacting adjusted operating earnings discussed above, net earnings for the second quarter of 2022 included a $352 million unrealized foreign exchange loss on the revaluation of U.S. dollar denominated debt recorded in financing expenses, a non-cash impairment reversal of $715 million on the company's share of the White Rose assets, a non-cash impairment of $70 million against the company's share of its assets in Norway, a $19 million unrealized gain on risk management activities recorded in other income (loss) and a $130 million income tax expense related to the items noted. Net earnings in the prior year quarter included a $174 million unrealized foreign exchange gain on the revaluation of U.S. dollar denominated debt recorded in financing expenses, a $13 million unrealized loss on risk management activities recorded in other income (loss) and a $15 million income tax expense related to the items noted.

Adjusted Operating Earnings Reconciliation(1)

    Three months ended
June 30 
    Six months ended
June 30 
 
($ millions)    2022      2021      2022      2021   
Net earnings    3 996      868      6 945      1 689   
Unrealized foreign exchange loss (gain) on U.S. dollar denominated debt    352      (174    206      (370 
Unrealized (gain) loss on risk management activities    (19    13      (94    (14 
Asset impairment (reversal)    (645        (645     
Restructuring charge                168   
Income tax expense (recovery) on adjusted operating earnings adjustments    130      15      157      (5 
Adjusted operating earnings(1)    3 814      722      6 569      1 468   

(1) Adjusted operating earnings is a non-GAAP financial measure. All reconciling items are presented on a before-tax basis and adjusted for income taxes in the income tax expense (recovery) on adjusted operating earnings adjustments line. See the Non-GAAP Financial Measures section of this news release.

Adjusted Funds from Operations and Cash Flow Provided by Operating Activities

Adjusted funds from operations increased to $5.345 billion ($3.80 per common share) in the second quarter of 2022, compared to $2.362 billion ($1.57 per common share) in the prior year quarter. Adjusted funds from operations were influenced by the same factors impacting adjusted operating earnings noted above.

Cash flow provided by operating activities, which includes changes in non-cash working capital, was $4.235 billion ($3.01 per common share) for the second quarter of 2022, compared to $2.086 billion ($1.39 per common share) in the prior year quarter. In addition to the factors impacting adjusted funds from operations, cash flow provided by operating activities was further impacted by a greater use of cash associated with the company's working capital balances in the second quarter of 2022 compared to the prior year quarter. The use of cash in the second quarter of 2022 was primarily due to an increase in accounts receivable and inventory balances related to the increase in commodity prices through the quarter, partially offset by an increase in accounts payable and accrued liabilities and an increase in taxes payable related to the company's 2022 income tax expense.

Operating Results

Suncor's total upstream production was 720,200 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boe/d) in the second quarter of 2022, compared to 699,700 boe/d in the prior year quarter.

The company's net synthetic crude oil production increased to 483,000 bbls/d in the second quarter of 2022, compared to 437,200 bbls/d in the second quarter of 2021, due to increased production from Syncrude, partially offset by lower volumes from Oil Sands Base which was impacted by planned maintenance activities during the current quarter, including annual coker maintenance at Upgrader 2 and unplanned maintenance. In the prior year, annual planned maintenance activities were deferred to the third quarter to manage COVID-19-related execution risks. At Syncrude, upgrader utilization of 93% in the second quarter of 2022, compared to 55% in the prior year quarter, reflected lower planned maintenance activities in the current period, including the impacts of planned hydrotreater maintenance that was advanced to the first quarter of 2022.

The company's non-upgraded bitumen production was 158,500 bbls/d in the second quarter of 2022, compared to 178,500 bbls/d in the second quarter of 2021, due to decreased production from the company's In Situ assets, which was partially offset by increased production at Fort Hills. Decreased production from the company's In Situ assets was primarily due to the major planned turnaround at Firebag, which commenced during the quarter, and unplanned maintenance at MacKay River, which returned to normal production rates in the third quarter. Production from Fort Hills increased to 87,400 bbls/d, compared to 45,300 bbls/d in the prior year quarter, reflecting two-train operations, partially offset by planned maintenance completed early in the quarter.

Subsequent to the second quarter of 2022, the planned maintenance activities at Oil Sands Base Upgrader 2 and Firebag were completed, and both assets have safely ramped up to normal operating rates.

E&P production during the second quarter of 2022 was 78,700 boe/d, compared to 84,000 boe/d in the prior year quarter. The decrease in production was primarily due to the sale of the company's working interest in the Golden Eagle Area Development in the fourth quarter of 2021, and natural declines, partially offset by increased production at Buzzard in the current period, as the prior year quarter was impacted by planned turnaround activities.

Refinery crude throughput increased to 389,300 bbls/d and refinery utilization was 84% in the second quarter of 2022, compared to 325,300 bbls/d and 70% in the prior year quarter, reflecting planned turnaround activities in both periods. During the second quarter of 2022, the company completed planned turnaround activities at its Edmonton, Sarnia and Montreal refineries, and unplanned maintenance at its Commerce City refinery, enabling its refineries to exit the quarter with an average refinery utilization of over 100%. Refined product sales in the second quarter of 2022 increased to 561,700 bbls/d, compared to 463,300 bbls/d in the prior year quarter, reflecting improved refined product demand in the current period compared to the prior year quarter, which was impacted by COVID-19-related restrictions. This increased refined product demand was partially met by a planned draw of refined product inventory that the company strategically built in the first quarter of 2022 in anticipation of significant planned turnaround activities in the second quarter.

"In the second quarter of 2022, we successfully executed planned maintenance activities across many of our assets in both the upstream and downstream," said Smith. "With the annual planned maintenance program completed on our downstream assets, we expect to achieve strong refinery utilizations for the remainder of the year, allowing the company to continue to capture strong forecasted benchmark crack spreads and refining margins."

The company's total operating, selling and general expenses were $3.088 billion in the second quarter of 2022, compared to $2.720 billion in the prior year quarter. The increase was mainly due to a significant increase in commodity input costs, primarily natural gas prices, increased share-based compensation expenses and higher costs associated with increased Oil Sands production. The company's exposure to higher natural gas costs is partially mitigated by revenue from power sales that is recorded in operating revenues.

Strategy Update

The company's ability to operate reliably and efficiently is underpinned by Suncor's value of safety above all else. Suncor is fully committed to improving its safety and operational performance, a critical task in achieving the company's operational excellence priorities.

The company is implementing specific safety continuous improvements and is continuously strengthening Suncor's safety culture, ensuring safe practices are consistently implemented across all of Suncor's facilities and geographies, and the company is making measured progress to achieve specific milestones. As well, the company has made a number of changes in its senior management team to add to its operating bench strength, including adding experienced mining leaders in critical leadership positions. At the same time, Suncor has also realigned its central support group with experienced management and staff to drive improved safety and operational risk management performance with the business areas.

The company's safety improvement plans are focused on strengthening its risk management and systems, continuously improving contractor safety management and engaging the front line to deliver safe work with a strong safety culture. In addition, the company is implementing specific actions to continuously improve safety in Suncor's mine and tailings operations, which have experienced a number of serious safety incidents. This includes implementing technologies, such as collision awareness and driver safety systems, making operational modifications to help improve mobile equipment egress and strengthening controls for high-risk activities. These changes are expected to help prevent incidents and mitigate serious impacts from incidents should they happen.

"Recent events underscore the important work to be done on improving the safety performance of our company," said Smith. "We must acknowledge where we have fallen short and recognize the critical need to drive our safety improvement work with focus and vigour."

The company has also made disciplined decisions to adjust and streamline its portfolio to enable a greater focus on its core business, to safely increase the reliability, utilization and integration of its assets while continuing efforts to sustainably reduce controllable costs. In the first six months of 2022, the company announced that it was taking steps to optimize its asset portfolio through the planned divestment of its E&P assets in Norway and its wind and solar assets. Subsequent to the second quarter of 2022, the company reached an agreement for the sale of its Norway assets, pending regulatory approval, for gross proceeds of approximately $410 million (Canadian dollar equivalent), before closing adjustments and other closing costs. The sale is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2022, with an effective date of March 1, 2022. The sale process for the company's wind and solar assets is progressing, with a sale expected to close early in 2023. Based on interest received in the company's E&P assets in the U.K., the company has also commenced a sale process for its entire U.K. E&P portfolio.

Suncor will also be undertaking a strategic review of its downstream retail business with the goal of unlocking shareholder value. With the support of external advisors, this review will evaluate and consider a wide range of alternatives, from a potential sale of the business to options to enhance the value of its retail business.

In E&P Canada, investment in the Terra Nova Floating, Production, Storage and Offloading facility related to the Asset Life Extension Project is ongoing and the asset is anticipated to sail back to Canada for a safe return to operations later in the fourth quarter of 2022. Also, in the second quarter of 2022, Suncor and the joint venture owners announced the decision to restart the West White Rose Project offshore the east coast of Canada. As a result of the restart decision, Suncor has increased its ownership in the White Rose assets by an additional 12.5% to approximately 39%. Production from the West White Rose Project is expected to commence in the first half of 2026 and is expected to provide long-term value for the company by extending the production life of the White Rose field.

The company continues to advance a number of strategic initiatives that are expected to contribute to the company's incremental free funds flow target through increased revenue and reductions in operating costs, capital expenditures and reclamation spending. The company expects to achieve an additional $400 million of incremental free funds flow by the end of 2022, building on the incremental $465 million achieved in 2021, through the implementation of digital, process and technology initiatives. The operating cost portion of the savings generated from these improvement initiatives is helping to offset inflationary pressures and increased mining costs in the company's Oil Sands business. The company also continues to optimize transfers on the interconnecting pipelines between Oil Sands Base and Syncrude, capitalizing on the regional strength and flexibility of its Oil Sands assets.

The company continues to progress towards realizing $100 million of annual gross synergies for the Syncrude joint venture owners in 2022, with an additional $200 million of annual gross synergies expected to be realized through 2023-2024.

Suncor is committed to allocating excess funds in accordance with its capital allocation framework, maximizing returns to its shareholders and strengthening its balance sheet. In the second quarter of 2022, the company executed on its previously announced annual capital allocation targets, returning record value to its shareholders of approximately $3.2 billion, through approximately $2.6 billion in share repurchases and the payment of $657 million of dividends. The company repurchased approximately 54 million common shares in the second quarter of 2022, which represents the highest quarterly common share repurchases in the company's history. As at August 2, 2022, since the start of the year, the company has repurchased approximately 88.5 million common shares, or the equivalent of 6.1% of its common shares as at December 31, 2021. The quarterly dividend of $0.47 per common share is also the highest dividend in the company's history.

Aligned with the company's annual capital allocation targets, in the second quarter of 2022, the company completed an early redemption, at par, of its outstanding US$450 million 2.80% notes and US$550 million 3.10% notes, originally due in 2023 and 2025, respectively. These actions clear Suncor's long-term debt maturity runway until 2026. The company also completed a partial redemption of US$10.2 million of its outstanding US$152 million 6.00% notes, due in 2042. With the company's confidence in its expected cash flows, the current business environment and expected proceeds from the dispositions of assets, the company expects to achieve the lower end of its 2025 targeted net debt range of $12 billion during the second half of 2022. Once net debt has been reduced to $12 billion, the company expects to allocate 75% of excess funds towards share buybacks and 25% towards debt repayment. Once the company's net debt balance is at its $9 billion floor, the company expects to allocate excess funds fully towards shareholder returns.

Corporate Guidance

Suncor has updated its full-year business environment outlook assumptions for WCS at Hardisty from US$84.00/bbl to US$80.00/bbl, New York Harbor 2-1-1 crack from US$38.00/bbl to US$41.50/bbl and AECO-C Spot from $6.10/GJ to $5.90/GJ due to changes in key forward curve pricing for the remainder of the year.

In addition, the company's total production range has been revised from 750,000 bbls/d - 790,000 bbls/d to 740,000 bbls/d - 760,000 bbls/d to reflect year to date performance and expected performance for the remainder of the year. As a result, the top of the production ranges for Oil Sands operations have been revised from 435,000 bbls/d to 415,000 bbls/d, Fort Hills from 100,000 bbls/d to 90,000 bbls/d, Syncrude from 190,000 bbls/d to 185,000 bbls/d and E&P from 85,000 bbls/d to 80,000 bbls/d.

The company has also revised its full year outlook for capital expenditures from a single point estimate of $4.7 billion to a range of $4.9 billion - $5.2 billion. The increase in capital guidance reflects inflationary pressures across the business, the West White Rose Project restart and the company's increased working interest in that project, and increased spend during turnarounds and maintenance to improve safety and reliability across the portfolio.

The company has also updated its Fort Hills cash operating costs per barrel guidance range, with the increased range attributed primarily to inflationary pressures, increased commodity costs and reduced production. As a result, Fort Hills cash operating costs per barrel have been updated from $25.00 - $28.00 to $27.00 - $30.00.

As a result of these updates, the full-year current income tax expense range has increased from $4.0 billion - $4.3 billion to $4.4 billion - $4.7 billion.

For further details and advisories regarding Suncor's 2022 corporate guidance, see .

Adjusted Funds From (Used In) Operations

Three months ended June 30  Oil Sands  Exploration
and
Production 
Refining and
Marketing 
Corporate and Eliminations  Income
Taxes(1) 
Total 
($ millions)  2022  2021  2022  2021  2022  2021  2022  2021  2022  2021  2022  2021 
Earnings (loss) before income taxes(1)  2 892  582  1 361  340  2 007  486  (851)  (320)  5 409  1 088 
Adjustments for:                         
Depreciation, depletion, amortization and impairment  1 279  1 092  (505)  191  199  208  25  21  998  1 512 
Accretion  58  60  16  15  76  77 
Unrealized foreign exchange loss (gain) on U.S. dollar denominated debt  352  (174)  352  (174) 
Change in fair value of financial instruments and trading inventory  (22)  71  (22)  (47)  (89)  (36)  (133)  (12) 
Loss (gain) on disposal of assets  (11)  (8)  (10)  (8) 
Share-based compensation  53  24  21  14  57  41  134  81 
Settlement of decommissioning and
restoration liabilities 
(59)  (39)  (18)  (3)  (3)  (1)  (80)  (43) 
Other  29  54  (1)  15  51  69 
Current income tax expense  (1 452)  (228)  (1 452)  (228) 
Adjusted funds from (used in) operations(1)  4 231  1 844  841  500  2 127  677  (402)  (431)  (1 452)  (228)  5 345  2 362 
Change in non-cash working capital                      (1 110)  (276) 
Cash flow provided by operating activities                      4 235  2 086 
Six months ended June 30  Oil Sands  Exploration
and Production 
Refining and
Marketing 
Corporate and Eliminations  Income
Taxes(1) 
Total 
($ millions)  2022  2021  2022  2021  2022  2021  2022  2021  2022  2021  2022  2021 
Earnings (loss) before income taxes(1)  5 201  1 027  2 006  598  3 424  1 420  (1 374)  (843)  9 257  2 202 
Adjustments for:                         
Depreciation, depletion, amortization and impairment  2 384  2 250  (376)  293  411  417  50  42  2 469  3 002 
Accretion  121  119  30  29  154  151 
Unrealized foreign exchange loss (gain) on U.S. dollar denominated debt  206  (370)  206  (370) 
Change in fair value of financial instruments and trading inventory  (43)  (44)  (39)  (54)  (125)  (18)  (207)  (115) 
(Gain) loss on disposal of assets  (1)  (11)  (8)  (8)  (12)  (16) 
Share-based compensation  81  23  26  12  81  43  190  79 
Settlement of decommissioning and
restoration liabilities 
(147)  (107)  (18)  (1)  (5)  (4)  (1)  (1)  (171)  (113) 
Other  49  103  (40)  (1)  27  (29)  35  (19)  164 
Current income tax expense  (2 428)  (512)  (2 428)  (512) 
Adjusted funds from (used in) operations(1)  7 645  3 371  1 565  865  3 724  1 849  (1 067)  (1 101)  (2 428)  (512)  9 439  4 472 
Change in non-cash working capital                      (2 132)  (41) 
Cash flow provided by operating activities                      7 307  4 431 

 Net Debt and Total Debt


 Free Funds Flow

    Three months ended
June 30 
    Six months ended
June 30 
 
($ millions)    2022      2021      2022      2021   
Cash flow provided by operating activities    4 235      2 086      7 307      4 431   
(Add) deduct change in non-cash working capital    (1 110    (276    (2 132    (41 
Adjusted funds from operations    5 345      2 362      9 439      4 472   
Less capital expenditures including capitalized interest(1)    (1 295    (1 347    (2 306    (2 150 
Free funds flow    4 050      1 015      7 133      2 322 

 
Source: EvaluateEnergy® ©2022 EvaluateEnergy Ltd