Tuesday, May 13, 2008

File This Under: Not That Profitable

Art Carden, Econ blogger at the Division of Labour, points to the fact that even though oil corporations are making billions of dollars in profit, it is not that big in the perspective that hundreds of billions are on the line. I thought it would be interesting to provide the profit margin for the top publicly traded oil corporations:
BP 7.66%
Exxon Mobil 10.82%
Total S.A. 9.63%
Chevron 8.44%
ConcoPhillips 6.75%
Eni SpA (E) 11.39%
Repsol YPF SA 6.12%

Compare that to the 3 or 4% they could make on an essentially risk-free 1 year Certificate of Deposit. Not particularly outlandish I would say. Other "evil" corporations are usually considered are those in the health insurance industry, their profit margins are:
Aetna 6.38%
Unitedhealth Group 6.16%
Wellpoint 5.11%

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

These figures you quote are net income as a percentage of sales, not as a percentage of invested capital. They are therefore not comparable to returns on cds or other financial investments. The correct comparable figures may be higher or lower, I don't know. But since the oil companies' lobbyists like to quote these figures, my guess is that they are biased low.