Imperial Oil, Canada's largest oil group, has said that its first quarter net income fell by sixty nine percent as prices for oil and other fuels fell and natural-gas production declined at the group. Net income dropped to C$106 million ($67.4 million) from C$340 million in the same period last year, the company said in a statement. Revenue fell by a quarter to C$3.49 billion from C$4.72 billion. The Toronto based company's petroleum products unit, which sells gasoline under the Esso banner, had a loss of C$37 million, compared with year earlier profit C$120 million, as sales fell and it made less money on each barrel of oil it refined. “They've lost money there big time,” said Wilf Gobert, an analyst with Peters & Co. The results may indicate “negative surprises” for Imperial rival Shell Canada, Royal Dutch/Shell Group's Canadian unit, Gobert said.
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