Golar LNG profit slashed

Golar LNG has been saved from a first quarter loss by the sale of a ship to spin-off Golar LNG Partners.

The John Fredriksen gas carrier company said net earnings to 31 March were $12.99m, against $85.56m in 2013.

There was a gain of $35.4m from the sale of the 170,000-cbm Golar Igloo (built 2014).

Operating revenue dropped to $20.96m from $35.81m and it logged higher vessel operating expenses and depreciation.

Two ships were mostly idle in the quarter, but another came out of drydock to provide a full quarter’s earnings, it said.

The company said it remained “concerned by the state of the LNG carrier market."

“As this weak market looks set to prevail at least for the remaining part of 2014, the board believes that the current spot fleet will continue to operate with a negative cash contribution,” it added.

“However, attractive commercial opportunities will continue to arise related to geographical arbitrage and seasonal effects.”

The operating result for the second quarter will be in line or slightly better than the first quarter figures.