Barnwell reportsStar-Bulletin staff
Barnwell Industries Inc. today reported a profit of $100,000 for its third quarter, reversing a loss from a year earlier.
The Honolulu-based oil and natural gas exploration company attributed the gain, which amounts to 8 cents a share, to higher energy prices and the start of an around-the-clock drilling project in Hilo.
Revenue for the quarter ended June 30 totaled $3.7 million, up 31 percent from the comparable 1998 quarter. The company incurred a loss of $920,000, or 70 cents a share, in that year-earlier period.
Morton Kinzler, Barnwell's chairman and chief executive, said the increase in earnings and revenue would have been greater except for maintenance-related factors, including a longer-than-expected shutdown of one pipeline project.
With oil and natural gas prices rising, Kinzler said he expects continued improvement in earnings.
Barnwell's oil prices jumped 35 percent in the quarter, while its natural gas prices were up 24 percent.
The Hilo water drilling project, which extends to a depth of more than two miles, began March 15.
By operating it continuously, the project effectively is generating revenues equal to three drilling rigs, the company said.
Barnwell said the loss from the year-earlier quarter was due primarily to write-downs for costs involving the development of oil and gas properties.